The Red Tail Hawks are headed to Baker City for the first time since 2016 after beating the Cougars on the road in the second round of the 1A state tournament.
“Tough loss. Wish we could redo the first quarter,” Echo coach Brandi Russell said. “We had watched film and knew what they would do with their offense, we just didn’t make the adjustments we practiced until the second quarter”
RVAA (22-3), which has won 11 games in a row, will play North Douglas at 6:30 p.m. on March 1, at Baker High School. Echo finished its season with an 18-9 record.
The Red Tail Hawks got off to a 16-4 lead in the first quarter, getting nine points from Emma Bischoff. They extended their lead to 24-9 at the half. In the third, the Cougars came to life, going on a 15-5 run, keyed by eight points from Cid Estes, to pull within 29-24. RVAA outscored Echo 12-9 in the fourth to hold on for the win.
“I am proud of the girls for battling until the end,” Russell said. “They executed what we’ve practiced in the second half, stayed together on the different defenses, communicated the changes better, and started playing as the team I know.”
Mayela De La Fuente led the Cougars with 15 points, while Estes had 14. Bischoff led RVAA with 27 points, while Isabelle Zamora added seven.
“I will miss our three seniors (Lili Wallis, Estes, JoLee Palmateer), who have added so much on and off the court,” Russell said. “We have eight returning varsity players next year, along with some talented I players and eighth graders coming up. Echo should be making a mark for several years to come. This is a great group of girls who have battled with valor.”