Husky boys win Cottage Grove tournament, now 7-4

The Husky boys basketball team brought home their first tournament trophy in four years from Cottage Grove on Dec. 28-29.

They opened with a tough rematch against Gladstone and then defeated Cottage Grove to win the tournament. Cottage Grove defeated Douglas to reach the championship game.

Friday night, the Huskies defeated Gladstone by just three points, 56-53. A couple of weeks ago, the Huskies defeated Gladstone by 14. They defeated Cottage Grove 52-47.

Gladstone ran a triangle and two defense to try to shut down Gabe Kauffman and Colton Emmert, Little said. That gave the Huskies some trouble. “They just came out with nothing to lose and gave us a run for our money.”

The Huskies led 14-8 after one quarter and trailed 28-22 at halftime. They trailed 38-37 at the end of the third quarter.

Kauffman managed to break past the defense and lead the Huskies with 25 points. Ryan Graville added 14. Colton Emmert added seven.

Emmert is smart enough to dish the ball to Kauffman when Kauffman is shooting well, Little said. That may have paid off against Cottage Grove, which scouted the Huskies Friday and didn’t see Emmert scoring.

Jerad Olsen also scored six points; Josh Riggs, two; and Levi Marchbanks, two.

“Gabe carried us Friday night,” Little said. “And Colton carried us Saturday night.”

Cottage Grove focused on Kauffman, and Emmert scored 28, shooting 12-15 from the field, to lead Husky scoring against Cottage Grove. Kauffman added another 15, 11 of those points in the fourth quarter. Also scoring were Graville with four, Olsen, four; and Dustin Hay, two.

The Huskies led Cottage Grove 14-11 after the first quarter and were tied 20-20 at halftime. Cottage Grove led 35-34 at the end of the third quarter.

The key to that game came with about two minutes left. Riggs came up with a critical rebound, and Graville had a clutch block to give the Huskies a chance to bring the game back.

“Saturday, last night, we looked great,” Coach Tim Little said. It was a good night to end the preseason. Cottage Grove is top-notch. They’re huge.”

Cottage Grove fielded two 6’4″ players and brought a 6’8″ player off the bench, Little said.

The Huskies lost 52-37 on Dec. 21. They trailed 12-10 at the end of the first quarter and 23-19 at halftime.

Three three-pointers by Junction City created too big a gap for the Huskies to overcome early in the third. Junction City led 42-31 at the end of the third quarter.

Kauffman led scoring with 24 points. Emmert added eight, and Graville added five.

Junction City is the top-ranked team in the state, Little said.

The Huskies are 7-4 going into league play on Jan. 8 at Philomath. They will host Taft on Jan. 11.