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West boys dominates Service for CIC hoops title

Mike Nesper

The conference crown was never in question for West High's boys on Saturday.

The Eagles led nearly the entire game and never trailed en route to a 72-59 win over second-seeded Service in the Cook Inlet Conference basketball championship game.

Missed shots was the difference, Service coach Tyler Moor said. The Cougars shot just under 32 percent from the field while West made 49 percent of its field goals.

"They just shot the ball better," Moor said.

Especially from beyond the arc. West was better than 70 percent on its 3-pointers, draining 10 of 14.

Tournament MVP Isa Wilson made half of those. The senior guard poured in a game-high 26 points for West. Da'Zhon Wyche (16 points) and Don McMorris (11) also reached double figures for West.

Reece Robinson -- the conference's most valuable player -- paced the Cougars with 18 points. Ihro Raguindin pumped in 15 for Service.

Service, which trailed by as many as 16 points, battled back with a 10-2 run to make it a one-possession game in third quarter. West led 50-43 going into the final eight minutes, and it stayed a seven-point game until midway through the fourth quarter.

Enter McMorris.

He scored seven points in quick succession to put West up by 14 and the game out of reach.

A fast start keyed the victory, McMorris said.

"We came out with a lot of energy," he said.

West coach Antonio Wyche credited the team's nine seniors with stepping up during the championship.

"My seniors came through and played big," he said.

While please with their performance, West has bigger ambitions than winning a conference title, McMorris said. The Eagles are already looking forward to the March 20-22 state tournament.

"We're not satisfied with this," he said. "We've got three more games to go."

Eagle River 50, Dimond 48

Dimond hurt its chances of earning one of two at-large Class 4A state berths by losing 50-48 to lower-seeded Eagle River in Saturday's third-place game. Those berths are decided by Winning Percentage Index rankings, which factors in opponents' strength.

The game stayed close the whole way -- no one led by more than five points. Dimond held a 24-21 advantage at the half.

Eagle River made it a one-point game going into the final eight minutes and then outscored Dimond 17-14.

Thomas Jones poured in a game-high 20 points to lead Eagle River. Fellow senior Collin Metzel added 11.

Austin Osborne (14 points) and Muhamad Cole (11) paced the Lynx.

Eagle River won the rebounding game, hauling in 38 boards to Dimond's 25.

Reach Mike Nesper at mnesper@adn.com or 257-4335

Boys CIC All Tournament team

MVP: Isa Wilson, West

Ihro Raguindin, Service; Desmond Johnson, East; Payton Fullmer, Bartlett; Da’Zhon Wyche, West; Austin Osborne, Dimond; Thomas Jones, Eagle River; Jake Swenson, South; Reece Robinson, Service; Carlos Diaz, Dimond; Collin Metzel, Eagle River; Pindo Drammeh, Service.


By MIKE NESPER
mnesper@adn.com