State 2B Basketball: Indians Come Close, but Can’t Conquer Kittitas
FAVORITES: Top-Ranked Coyotes Outlast Toledo 57-50 Behind 26 Points From Ravet; Arceo-Hansen Leads Indians With 22
By Aaron VanTuyl
For The Chronicle
SPOKANE — It was a loss, but Toledo could take bittersweet solace in the fact that they gave the tournament favorites a run for their money.
The Indians kept pace throughout and took a brief fourth-quarter lead here Thursday morning before falling to Kittitas, 57-50, in the quarterfinals of the State 2B Boys Basketball Tournament.
Fano Arceo-Hansen scored 22 points to lead Toledo and led the defensive effort against Kittitas’ Gonzaga-bound senior guard Brock Ravet, who finished with 26.
The win puts two-time defending champion Kittitas in the state semifinals against Brewster on Friday, while Toledo drops into a loser-out consolation game with Willapa Valley at 9 a.m. Friday morning.
“We’ll definitely walk away from that one going ‘We could have won, we could have won,’” Toledo coach Grady Fallon said, explaining a few late calls that could have changed the momentum and the outcome. “There was a few of those 50-50 calls that, one way or the other, it would have been right down to the wire.”
Toledo had lost to the Coyotes, 83-56, back on Dec. 29 in Ellensburg. Thursday’s quarterfinal was an entirely different story.
“Our defensive intensity was probably key to that,” Arceo-Hansen said. “Then we ran our sets and got buckets.”
The senior forward spent most of the game checking Ravet, who went an uncharacteristic 2 of 11 from long range and 8 of 20 from the field.
“Every time you play somebody and lose, you don’t want to do the same thing and lose again,” Fallon noted. “You want to try this or tweak this, or whatever, and they did a good job of forcing him baseline and kind of staying in all of their hips, and making them uncomfortable.”
The defense kept the Indians in the game, despite a poor outside shooting performance. Toledo went just 2 of 13 from long range, and didn’t convert a triple until the final minute of the third quarter.
Those threes, though, were big. Andreas Malunat hit one to cut the Coyotes’ lead to 39-38 with 55 seconds left in the third quarter, and another to give Toledo a 41-39 lead to start the fourth frame.
“I think we were up one with seven minutes left in the fourth, and that felt pretty good,” Arceo-Hansen said. “I wanted to slow it down after that, but I knew there was too much time.”
Kittitas’ Caleb Harris answered with a three and scored on a dish from Ravet, putting the lead back at five. Arceo-Hansen scored to cut it to 46-43, but Ravet hit a pair of foul shots on the other end and the Indians couldn’t get closer than four points the rest of the way.
Arceo-Hansen scored his 22 points on an efficient 9 of 11 shooting performance, adding a game-high 10 rebounds and crediting the performance to motivation from the coaching staff.
“Tony (Zamarano), our assistant coach, always calls me a little girl if I have a bad game,” Arceo-Hansen explained. “So he said, ‘Don’t play like a little girl today,’ so that was kind of the goal.”
His defense on Ravet was just as important, Fallon noted.
“That’s been one of the things that’s made us so good, is having him as a defender,” Fallon said. “He’s a tougher matchup than most guys probably put on Ravet. Even those step-backs that he can hit, it’s tougher with (Arceo-Hansen) on him.”
Westin Wallace added 10 points and eight rebounds for Toledo, while Brian Wood chipped in six points.
Martin Arreola and Bailey Gibson each added 12 points for Kittitas (26-1).
Toledo (22-4) now faces Willapa Valley in a rematch of the District 4 championship game. Toledo won that contest 58-37 in Chehalis.
“It’s a double-edged sword. It’s good to play somebody you already beat, because you know you can beat them,” Fallon said. “But I told my guys in there, what do you think they’re thinking? It’s our turn for revenge. They’re going to come out a little more motivated than maybe they were last time, or inspired. They’re going to tweak their game plan.”
COYOTES 57, INDIANS 50
Toledo 11 15 12 12 —50
Kittitas 14 14 11 18 —57
Toledo (50) — Wood 6, F. Arceo-Hansen 22, Wallace 10, Farbo 4, Malunat 6, Marcil 2
FG: 22 of 50 —.440 FT: 4 of 8 —.500 Reb. 31 (Arceo-Hansen 10)
Kittitas (57) — Harris 7, Gibson 12, Arreola 12, Ravet 26
FG: 19 of 45 —.422 FT: 15 of 19 —.789 Reb. 26 (Ravet 5)