League play tests Jacks again

Randie Becktel fakes a shot in the third quarter of St. Maries' game with Lakeside Dec. 10.

The St. Maries boys basketball team has built double-digit first quarter leads in six of its last seven games.

And Saturday at Orofino was no different.

But a familiar situation turned sour even before the first frame ended.

The Maniacs, who were down 4-21 with just seconds to play in the first quarter, hit a three-point shot at the buzzer.

From there the Lumberjacks were threatened in a second consecutive CIL contest and outscored in the second and third quarters of a 50-38 win.

“I think Orofino and Grangeville are both better than we expected,” Coach Bryan Chase said. “They’re both well-coached, and you can tell they’ve scouted us well.”

St. Maries is 2-0 in Central Idaho League play. Grangeville is 2-1 and would join St. Maries atop league standings with a win Saturday at Grangeville.

“I hope we can maintain energy for four quarters,” Coach Chase said. “We’ve had some really good first quarters lately, but then kind of get away from it after that.”

St. Maries won the first meeting with Grangeville two week ago 60-50, holding off a late Bulldog run that put Grangeville to within seven points.

The Jacks got 12 points from Coleman Ross at Orofino Jan. 23 to go with five rebounds and five steals. Tristan Nelson added eight points and eight rebounds as the Lumberjacks pulled off the road victory behind their second-lowest offensive output of the season.

Greyson Sands and Tristan Nelson both scored 17 points Jan. 21 at Priest River. Tristan added six rebounds and three assists. Coleman chipped in ten points as his team jumped out to a 21-6 lead through one quarter.

Upcoming: St. Maries (12-0, 2-0 CIL before Jan. 26 game vs. Priest River) tips off Saturday at 4:30 p.m. at Grangeville High.

St. Maries 50, Orofino 38

SM 21 7 8 14 50

OHS 7 9 10 12 38

Ross – 12 pts., 5 reb., 5 st.; Nelson – 8 pts., 8 reb.; Gibson – 10 pts.; Stancil – 7 pts.; Renner – 4 pts.; Elliott – 3 pts.

St. Maries 70, Priest River 48

SM 21 13 22 14 70

PR 6 12 14 15 48

Sands – 17 pts.; Nelson – 17 pts., 6 reb., 3 as.; Ross – 10 pts.; Gibson – 6 pts., 3 st.; Renner – 5 pts.; T. Renner – 4 pts.; Stancil – 4 pts.; Becktel – 4 pts.; Elliott – 3 pts.

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