Bellevue’s hopes of advancing to the final four of the NWAC Championship Tournament were dashed by a record-setting performance by Spokane’s Bri King.
The Bulldogs dropped a 76-62 decision to the Sasquatch in the Elite 8 round on Sunday afternoon as King set a new NWAC women’s tournament single-game record with 46 points.
“I’ve been saying all season she is hands-down the best guard in all of the NWAC,” said Bellevue coach Mel Stubblefield. “Today, she showed the reason why. She didn’t force anything. She played within her game. In the first quarter, she kind of tried to let her other players get in the flow of things. Then she finally just took over.”
BC, which overcame a 12-point halftime deficit in the opening victory over Centralia, made a third-quarter run against Spokane, but was turned away.
The Bulldogs (19-10) led 27-22 midway through the second quarter, but Spokane closed the half with a 10-2 run for a 32-29 advantage at the break.
The Sasquatch carried the momentum over into the third quarter, quickly pushing the lead to 46-31 behind three 3-pointers by King.
Bellevue battled back within 50-44, but King came up with a steal and layin to trigger an 8-2 run for a 60-46 lead entering the fourth quarter.
“This team scrapped, clawed, fought just to try to get a win,” Stubblefield said. “That was this team.”
Brenda Akoto and Molly Dixon each had 13 points and Erin Hamilton added 11 for the Bulldogs.
Led by King, the decisive statistic was from the three-point line. The Bulldogs had 25 field goals, shooting 45 percent, while Spokane had 26 field goals, shooting 41 percent.
But, Spokane was 13 of 25 from beyond the arc, while BC was 3 of 12.
King, a 5-4 sophomore guard, made 16 of 29 shots, including 9 of 14 from long distance. The previous single-game tournament record was 42 points set by Laci Effenberger of Clackamas against Skagit Valley in 2014.
Bellevue, the No. 3 seed in the North Region, tied for third in the region with an 8-6 record in league play, winning the final three regular-season games.
“It was a great season,” Stubblefield said. “A great group of players that we had, first and foremost in the classroom, and off the court as well. It was a fun group … . They got along very well. It was a good group.”
Last Updated March 12, 2017