Prairie       16   21   11    9    57
Kelso          32   15  21   13   81

(Kelso, WA) Snow and ice brought high school basketball in Cowlitz and Clark counties last week which put a delay in a battle for second place in the 3A Greater St. Helen’s League between the Prairie Falcons and Kelso Hilanders. Both teams entered Monday night’s showdown with a 2-1 league record with both of their losses coming to Evergreen who both teams get another shot to play later this month. That meant whoever came out with a win had control of their own destiny to take home the league title.

Kelso started the game with one of the best quarters any team in the state this season. The Hilanders were scorching hot from beyond the arc right out of the gate. Prairie’s offense also got off to a strong start but the few times they didn’t score, Kelso was making them pay with a barrage of threes. Hayden Yore led the way in the opening quarter attack with three quick three-pointers to force a Prairie timeout. It wasn’t just Yore dialing it up from long distance as Michael Henderson, Bryar Iddings, Easton Marshall, and Triton Hagdahl-Daniel all cashed in from three-point land as well. In total, Kelso buried eight 1st quarter threes en route to a 32-point quarter. Prairie did keep the game from getting out of hand with some threes of their own from Brendan Carter but it would still be Kelso holding a 32-16 lead after a quarter of play.

Prairie stayed very composed after being rocked by three-pointers and actually began to take control of the game in the 2nd. 6’6 sophomore Carson Morningstar really got cooking as the Falcons started to get the ball in the paint where they had the size advantage. It wasn’t just Morningstar’s height, but it was his athleticism and moves to the basket that gave Kelso issues. Whether he had to reverse and go underneath the basket or give the defender a ball fake to get to the hoop, Morningstar could only be slowed down by being fouled by the Hilanders. Fouls began to pile up for Kelso while Morningstar and Josh Crane continued to attack to cut the Prairie deficit down from north of 20 to just 10 at halftime as Kelso’s lead was just 47-37 at the break.

Coming out of halftime, Kelso took back over but not in the same way that they did in the opening quarter. For the second half, it was more attacking the paint for the Hilanders as guards Michael Henderson and Easton Marshall began to attack the basket off the dribble. The big guys in the paint in Triton Hagdahl-Daniel and Tyler Davis also controlled the boards limiting Prairie to a lot of one-and-dones while the Scotties got multiple looks on the offensive side thanks to the offensive rebounding of Hagdahl-Daniel and Davis. Meanwhile, Hayden Yore continued to pour it on as his scoring stayed very consistent. Again, it was more in the paint scoring rather than raining threes but the scoring was still there for Yore. Outside of Carson Morningstar and Cam Newsome, there just wasn’t a lot of offense coming for the Falcons. The Kelso defense took the weight off the shoulders of the offense as they catapulted off the fast start to a comfortable 81-57 win over Prairie.

Our Education Jobs MVP of the game was Hayden Yore of Kelso. That lightning quick start was sparked by Yore who splashed down three threes right out of the gate which immediately gave the night a special feeling as Yore was dialed in. The senior led the way with 29 points and four three-pointers for the Hilanders. It wasn’t just shooting though as Yore played unselfish basketball and was finding teammates on backdoor cuts as he continued to lead the offense when he wasn’t scoring. It was a special night for Hayden Yore as helped lead an all-around team effort win for Kelso.

Triton Hagdahl-Daniel also had a big night for the Scotties as he added 17 points while Michael Henderson, Bryar Iddings, and Easton Marshall all scored nine points apiece. Rounding out the scoring was Tyler Davis with four, A.J. Fabian with three, and Alex Dieter with one.

For the Prairie Falcons, Carson Morningstar led the way with 17 points while Josh Crane added 11 and Brendan Carter scored nine. Cam Newsome and Malachi Patton each scored seven while Riley Burke had four and Solomon Ogbeama had two.

Kelso moves to 11-4 and 3-1 in league play as the Hilanders will be back in action tonight in a nonleague road matchup with the Battle Ground Tigers at 7pm. Prairie drops to 7-7 and 2-2 in GSHL 3A play and will have Tuesday off before hosting Mountain View on Wednesday at 7pm.

For more on the game check out the ESN postgame show below with our video highlights. To watch the full game replay, you can do so on the following link to the NFHS Network. (Subscription service) Watch full game replay on this link.

ESN Post Game Show

Yore’s Electric Start

Great Passing From Prairie

Transition Offense for Kelso




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