McNary sophomore Abigail Hawley scored five points in a 58-56 loss at South Salem on Tuesday, Jan. 17. (KEIZERTIMES/Derek Wiley)

By DEREK WILEY
Of the Keizertimes

SALEM—McNary (9-6, 4-3) went into South Salem and almost knocked off one of the top girls basketball teams in the state.

Kailey Doutt had 20 points and Anita Lao added 17 but the Lady Celts came up just short, 58-56, on Tuesday, Jan. 17 to the defending Greater Valley Conference champions.

McNary fell behind 16-9 after the first quarter but Jaylene Montano made a 3-pointer to get McNary within 26-22 with 2:15 remaining in the second period.

However, the Lady Saxons closed the first half on a 7-0 run.

After the two teams played a back-and-forth third quarter, the Lady Celts outscored South Salem 19-9 in the final period but it wasn’t enough to pull the upset.

Evina Westbrook had 24 points to lead the Saxons, who entered the game as one of the hottest teams in the state with a 5-0 record in league-play, defeating GVC opponents by an average of more than 39 points.

They are ranked fifth in the OSAA power rankings.

McNary returns to action at home against Beaverton on Friday, Jan. 20 at 7 p.m. The Lady Celts then get back into league-play on Friday, Jan. 27 at Sprague.