Hermiston finished the Inland Cellular Bengal Shootout in Lewiston (Idaho) an even 1-1, clobbering the Moscow (Idaho) Bears on Friday, 59-33, and narrowly losing to the host Bengals, 75-70, in the title game Saturday.

Against the Bears, senior forward Trevor Phillips poured in 20 points to lead the way offensively.

While head coach Larry Usher has made tough defense a priority this season, he backed off a little bit after the game, saying his club may have came out “too aggressive,” committing 14 fouls in the first half.

In the title game against Lewiston, the host team leapt out to a 25-12 first-quarter lead, but a strong second half by the Bulldogs had them in line for a win.

The Bulldogs outscored the Bengals in every quarter after the first, and had the lead in the final period, but clutch free-throw shooting by Lewiston’s Jay Thomason and Sam Heitzman sealed the game.

Kurt Simmons scored 18 points to lead the Bulldogs’ offense. Joey Burns was right behind his teammate with 17 while Trevor Phillips contributed 13 and Austin Boedigheimer scored 10.

Hermiston connected on seven 3-point field goals, three coming from Simmons, but Lewiston was able to counter with nine of its own with three from Thomason. He finished with 15 points, but teammate Randon Fuentes led the Bengals with 16.

The Bulldogs headed north to take on the Moses Lake (Wash.) Chiefs on Tuesday, but the score was unavailable by presstime. Check out Saturday’s issue for the coverage.

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