UMATILLA — A strong defensive effort led the Umatilla Vikings back to .500 on Monday in a non-league win over visiting Mac-Hi.

The Vikings allowed the second fewest points they’d given up this season in a 40-29 win that saw the Pioneers’ scoring troubles continue.

Pioneer guard Hunter Yensen was able to get loose for a game-high 17 points, but only three teammates joined him on the score sheet and Mac-Hi (4-9) failed to surpass 30 points for the fourth time in five games after averaging 45.6 points in its first eight games.

The Vikings (7-7) started the game slow on offense as well, and led 9-4 after the first quarter. But Umatilla was able to build its lead to 18-10 at halftime and held on in a tightly-contested second half.

Juan Coria led a balanced Umatilla offense with 10 points and three other players chipped in eight. Tristen Sanguino was one of those, and added a team-high four rebounds and three assists.

The Vikings also played a relatively clean game, turning the ball over just 13 times and sending Mac-Hi to the free throw line just once.

Umatilla heads into league play on a two-game upswing and will play at Riverside on Thursday at 7:30 p.m.

Mac-Hi will try to end its five-game losing skid tonight at DeSales (WA) at 7:30 p.m.

———

M-H (4-9) 4 6 9 10 — 29

UMS (7-7) 9 9 9 13 — 40

MAC-HI — H. Yensen 17, A. Zaragoza 5, L. Garcia 5, A. Garza 2, A. Martinez, B. Debord, E. Garcia, R. Walton, A. Delgado.

UMATILLA — J. Coria 10, T. Sanguino 8, S. Cranston 8, K Webb 8, G. Armenta 2, J. Ramirez 2, D. Silverio 2, A. Simmons, S. Garcia, T. Durfey, J, Maret.

3-pointers — M-H 2, UHS 7. Free throws — M-H 0-1, UHS 7-14. Fouls — M-H 15, UHS 10.

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