Stayton did not get any style points, but a win's a win, and the Eagles settled for a big victory Feb. 28.
In a 4A girls basketball play-in game, Stayton built a 16-6 lead in the first quarter, nearly lost it several times, but held off Seaside for a 36-28 win over the Gulls.
Stayton advances to the Sweet 16 (Friday at North Marion), while Seaside's season comes to a close at 10-13 overall.
Seaside led just once at 2-0, and Stayton snapped a 4-4 tie with a 12-2 run, highlighted by a 3-pointer from K.J. Nyquist.
Jadah Doney hit a 3-pointer for the Gulls, who finished a low-scoring first half on a 5-0 run to trail 16-11 at halftime.
Seaside's Lilli Taylor was in foul trouble for much of the second half, but still managed to score nine of her team-high 11 points over the final two quarters. The next-highest scorer for the Gulls was Ruby Douglas, with eight.
Stayton countered with Nyquist, who led all scorers with 15 points. Six-foot sophomore Karlee Tyler added nine, and 5-10 sophomore Kaylee Tyler added six.
A three-point play by Taylor pulled Seaside to within 18-16 early in the third quarter, but the Eagles pushed the lead back to 28-18 at the end of the period.
The Gulls rallied one last time and closed to within 32-28 with four minutes left, but the Eagles made 2-of-6 free throws in the final 3:40 to help secure the win.
Seaside finished 10-for-44 from the field, 2-for-11 from the 3-point line. Taylor struggled offensively (3-for-20), but still had teams highs with 10 rebounds and three assists.
“We didn't quite get to where we wanted,” said Seaside coach Mike Hawes. “We certainly felt this was a winnable game, and had we shot just a bit better, perhaps we would have had a better outcome.”
He added, “we're just not very deep, and kids get fatigued. But we just couldn't get a ball through the hoop consistent enough, though we had close shots.”
Still, no complaints, he said.
“The girls worked hard all year, got better and were fun to be around. Marla (Olstedt, assistant coach) and I are proud of them.”
It was Stayton's fifth game (and fourth win) against a Cowapa League team this season. The Eagles won games at Seaside (34-33) and Banks (43-30) in December, and split two games with Valley Catholic.