The Clackamas print. (Oregon City, Oregon) 1989-2019, February 10, 1999, Page 10, Image 10

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    Sport
10______
Wednesday, February 10,1999
Women's Basketball
Clackamas streaks into third place with win
Despite losing four of their past
six games, the Cougars have
moved from fourth to third
JOHN THORBURN
Sports Editor
The Clackamas women's bas­
ketball team is very lucky.
With an inconsistent offense
and only two wins in their past
six games, the Cougars [6-4, 16-
9] have actually moved up in
Southern Region standings from
fourth place to third.
"We've been very fortunate
with the way some teams are play­
ing around the league," said
Clackamas Head Coach Jim
Martineau.
Southwestern Oregon, a
squad that was in second place
only two weeks ago, has lost
its past four games and has
dropped into a three-way tie for
fourth place.
Nevertheless, Clackamas
hasn't played up to par—scoring
less than 70 points in four of their
past six games.
In games in which the Cougars
JOHN THORBURN I Clackamas Print
Nichole Hayden dumps in two
of her 10 points against
Portland in the Clackamas
loss.
scored more than 70 points in a
game, the Cougars are 5-0. In
games in which the Clackamas
offense has scored under 70
points, the squad is 1-4.
Last Wednesday, the Clacka­
mas offense sputtered against
the Portland Panthers—turning
the ball over 35 times in a 67-56
loss.
"We didn't show up to play
against
Portland,"
said
Martineau. "We struggled on of­
fense, and when that happens,
we don't win.
"We played with a ton of heart;
our shots just weren't there and
we turned the ball over too
much."
Clackamas was led by Nichole
Hayden and Rachel Hudson, who
had 10 points each. Melinda
Freeman, the Cougars' average
leading scorer with 15.1 points
per game, was held to three
points on the night.
On Saturday, Clackamas re­
bounded with a 73-52 win over
Lane in Eugene.
Freeman had an impressive
game with 25 points to lead all
scorers, while Hayden, Hudson
and Noelle Johnson had eight
points each.
"We played our best game of
the year against Lane," noted
Martineau. "It restored some
confidence to the team, which is
what we need heading into this
week's games."
Clackamas faces Mt. Hood in
Gresham tonight, then returns
home for a game against top-
ranked and unbeaten Umpqua on
Saturday.
"Mt. Hood has been playing
real well lately," said Martineau.
"They're not one of the tougher
teams in the region, but on any
given night, any team can beat
anybody."
JOHN THORBURN I Clackamas Print
Sina Gago and the Cougars ran into a brick wall last week as the Cougars dropped a game to the
upstart Portland Panthers, 67-56. Clackamas rebounded with a 73-52 win over Lane on Saturday.
The Cougars sit behind
Umpqua and Chemeketa in the
Southern Region standings, but
are focused on finishing in the
#2 spot for better seeding for the
playoffs.
"If we can get wins this week,"
noted Martineau, "we'll be in a
good position to grab second
place."
In the Cougars' first meeting
with Mt. Hood, Clackamas
handed the Saints a 80-44 loss.
Against Umpqua, the team lost
85-67 in Roseburg.
"These next few games are
pretty critical for us," added
Martineau. "We want that #2
spot so we don't have to travel
for that first game in the play­
offs. We definitely don't want
the #4 spot."
In regional playoffs, the top
team hosts the fourth place team,
while the second place team
hosts the third place team.
If the playoffs began today, the
Cougars would need a win
against Chemeketa in Salem to
qualify for the league tournament
in Eugene March 2-4.
Last season, Clackamas won
the Southern Region title but
entered the tournament as the #2
seed from the region after losing
to Mt. Hood—a team that de­
feated favored Umpqua and
Clackamas in the region playoffs
and went on to lose in the league
championship game.
Saturday's game against the
Timberwomen tips off at 6 p.m.
Improved lineup bolsters talented Blazers
After defeating Vancouver 109-89 on Friday to finish their
exhibition season with a perfect record, Portland got a chance
to look back and see how this year’s squad is developing.
And from the look of it, they are a much deeper squad than
last year’s edition.
After an early first round play­
off exit last year at the hands of the
Los Angles Lakers, it became clear that
Portland had some weak areas to fill in
order to advance past the first round
the next season.
Well, the next season is finally
here, and from the look of it, they’ve
done a decent job of filling holes.
Free Agent pickup Greg Anthony, who came over from
Seattle, combined with the signing of guard Jim Jackson,
provides the stability that was lacking at the two guard
positions all last season.
Anthony is a veteran point guard who knows how to
come off the bench and make plays. He has been impres­
sive as the first point guard off the bench. He had 11 assists
during an exhibition game with Vancouver, with only one
turnover. He showed court vision much better than the
position had last year, as he was able to rifle passes to the
Forwards underneath the hoop to get plays running, some­
thing Portland struggled with when Stoudamire couldn’t
play last year.
Portland’s past problems with the off-guard position have
resulted from JR Rider’s attitude and selfish play. Rider has
constantly missed practices and games the last two years,
usually playing as an individual rattier than a team player
when he has shown up.
Jim Jackson’s signing gives Portland an established scorer
who knows how to play team ball. Jackson has averaged 18.5
ppg, 4.1 apg, and 5.0 rpg over his career. At 6’6” and 220 lbs.,
Jackson is capable of playing as a small forward as well as
guard. The versatility this allows Portland provides them with
a seemingly infinite amount of possibility for substitutions.
“Jimmy is a versatile player who adds experience, scoring
and depth to our roster,” said Bob Whitsitt, Portland’s team
president and general manager. “He was one of the top free
agents available, and we’re very pleased that he will be a
Portland Trailblazer. Not only do we value his skills as a player,
but we also value his numerous community service contribu­
tions.”
Recognized by both Ebony and Sports Illustrated maga­
zines for his exemplary commitment to community service,
Jackson's signing gives Portland an established veteran who
provides a much needed public relations boost. He allows
the Blazers to be less dependent on Rider than they have
been in the past. A starter on every NBA team he has ever
See Khosravi, page 11
INTERNET
Rasheed Wallace, named one of the most underrated
players in the NBA by The Sporting News, returns to the
Trailblazers' lineup.