The Umatilla boys are now enjoying a nine-game streak after turning away Blanchet Catholic 51-40 at the Crusader Classic New Year’s Invitational in Salem on Jan. 3.

“For traveling all last night, staying in a motel, and playing an early morning game, we did pretty good,” said coach Scott Bow.

Umatilla was up by just one point at the end of the first quarter before posting 17 points over Blanchet’s eight in the second quarter for a 29-19 halftime lead.

The Vikings stumbled in the third and were outscored 13-9, but came back in the fourth to claim the win.

Senior guard Sebastian Garcia sank 15 points for the Vikings, and junior guard Andrew Earl had 13.

“We’ve played a lot of good teams in these nonleague games,” Bow said. “I’m ready to see us take on our league.”

Umatilla played Western Christian on Jan. 4 in the tournament’s second round, losing 77-38. They went on to beat Amity 60-55 and were set to play Irrigon on Tuesday.

Girls

The Umatilla girls fell to 2-9 after Santiam handed them a 35-19 loss at round one of the Crusader Classic New Year’s Invitational on Jan. 3.

The Wolverines tore away early, taking a 9-2 lead at the end of the first quarter, leaving Umatilla unable to catch up.

“I thought we did really well,” said Vikings coach McKenzie Davis. “We got some great looks at the net, but when it came down to it, they (Santiam) made the shots, and we didn’t.”

Umatilla put up seven points against Santiam’s eight in the second quarter for a 17-9 Wolverine lead at the half. The Vikings could only manage 10 points in the second half.

Senior guard Charlene Alvarez posted five points to lead Umatilla. Senior post Alexandra Ford and freshman post Taylor Durfey had four each.

“We’re pretty prepared for the league,” Davis said. “I’m looking forward to seeing how the girls stack up against these teams. Right now, there’s not as much pressure because we’re in the preseason. I know people have kind of low expectations for us, so I’d like to see us show up, play some good basketball, and turn some heads.”

They went on to lose 45-32 to Portland Adventist Academy Friday and 47-32 to Valley Catholic Saturday. They played Irrigon Tuesday evening.

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