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Cheney’s Brophy guides East to win in All-State basketball

Laikyn Brophy admitted she didn’t make much noise during last year’s 3A/2A all-star high school girls basketball game. But with a new year comes a new approach.

The recent Cheney High School graduate scored eight points in overtime as the East team sneaked past the West 74-71 Saturday night at West Valley High School.

Brophy, who will play for Spokane Falls Community College next year, scored 10 points through four quarters, but let loose in the overtime period.

“When the game gets really close, sometimes I sit back, but today I pushed as hard as I could,” she said.

West’s Mar’Shay Moore hit a 3-pointer just 20 seconds into the overtime period, but Brophy responded with a 3 of her own on the East’s next possession. After making a pair of free throws, Brophy put the East ahead 73-68 with a three-point play with just under two minutes to play.

Recent Ellensburg graduate Shannon Bland made a free throw to put East ahead 74-71 with 6 seconds left. The West’s final possession was fumbled around near midcourt as time expired.

“This is going to help me come out of my shell a little bit,” said Brophy, who was named the game’s Most Valuable Player. “I think this game just lets me know that I can step up. It was a confidence booster.”

Brophy finished with a game-high 18 points and pulled down four rebounds for the East. Eastmont senior Charity Deaman added 14 points and six rebounds and Bland had 10 points and four assists.

Angelina Wagar Sanchez had 17 points and Beth Carlson added 16 points and six rebounds to lead the West.

The win was the third straight for Eastern Washington/Northern Idaho. Last year’s all-star game was a lopsided win, but both teams showed up to play this year.

Neither team led by more than four points until East ended the first half on a 14-8 run and took a 37-31 lead into halftime.

West came out firing in the second half and quickly closed the gap. Carlson, a Cascade High School junior, used her length to wreak havoc in the second half. She scored eight points in the first six minutes of the second half to close to gap to 43-42. The West seemed to steal the momentum, but every time the West looked like it was going to take over, the East responded.

Trailing 65-63 with 15 seconds left in regulation, the West had one chance left. After running the clock down, Sanchez got the ball on the elbow and buried a jumper at the buzzer to send the game into overtime.

East coach Lorin Carlon, head coach at West Valley High School in Spokane, gave credit to West’s Sanchez and Carlson.

“I was really impressed with them,” he said. “They caused a lot of trouble for us.”

Each team had 11 steals and the West had seven blocks.

Carlon said a simple adjustment on the pick-and-roll made a noticeable difference.

“Going over the screens was pretty huge for us,” he said.

Bland shot just 3 of 13 from the field, but did all of the little things to make an impact.

“She’s a farm kid,” Carlon said of Bland, who had six steals. “It looked like she could have played the whole game.”

In the 1A game, Colville senior Ashley Knight scored 18 points and pulled down eight rebounds to guide the East to a 75-70 win. Lexie Zappone, a recent graduate of Lakeside High School (Nine Mile Falls) added 11 points for the East, which led 40-33 at the half. Kaycee Creech of Cascade Christian had a game-high 22 points to lead the West.

In the B game, the East cruised to a 76-43 win. The East led 33-16 at the half and padded its lead in the second half. Reardan junior Kelsey Moos took home MVP honors after scoring eight points for the East. Ali Winters (St. John-Endicott) scored 12 to lead the East.