Mountain View rallies for season opening win against Washougal

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Moses McEwen scored 25 points for the Washougal boys basketball team Monday, at Mountain View High School. The Thunder defeated the Panthers 77-72. Photo by Micah Rice/The Columbian.

By Micah Rice

Columbian Sports Editor

Alex Hegel scored 22 points, Alex Bailey added 17 and Mountain View rallied for a season-opening win against Washougal.

Mountain View opened the fourth quarter on a 16-5 run to lead 71-62 with 2:44 to play. Hegel, a 6-foot-3 post, had 10 points in the final quarter.

Washougal pulled within 75-72 and had the ball with 24 seconds to play. But Makai Anderson’s block denied Washougal’s attempt to get a quick two-point shot.

Washougal jumped to a 20-10 lead, with Moses McEwen scoring 17 of his team-high 25 points in the first quarter.

But Mountain View clawed within 33-30 at halftime behind its swarming defense, something new coach JC Alexander wants to be his team’s hallmark.

“In high school basketball, if you can apply defensive pressure you can usually cause some turnovers and make something happen,” he said.

Carter Murray added 24 points for Washougal, which also has a new coach in AJ LaBree.

LaBree spent the last eight years of his 14-year coaching career at Sehome, where he went 121-77 and finished fourth place at the 2A state tournament in 2015.

“They’re going to fight hard,” LaBree said. “They want to be coached, they want to hustle, they want to learn how to win. I think as the season progresses, you’re going to see these guys come around.”