Toutle Lake’s comeback bid was just a few steps short.

The Ducks fell 46-44 to Willapa Valley at LeBaron Court on Wednesday after falling behind early. They outscored the Vikings 25-19 in the second half.

Mike Adams led Toutle Lake with 18 points and nine rebounds, while Broc Keeton added 12 points and seven assists.

With the Southwest 2B District Tournament loss, Toutle Lake will play Northwest Christian (Lacey) on Friday in a loser-out game. It’s the first of two-loser out games the Ducks face.

“We just didn’t finish it; we had all the momentum,” Ducks coach Eric Swanson said. “We started off poor, not to make excuses, because they played well at the start. We hadn’t played for a couple weeks and we had a poor start. We played a lot better in the second half, but once you gain that, you have to finish it off.

“We just didn’t finish it off.”

Toutle Lake had possession with 15 seconds left in regulation, and attempted to find spacing for a good shot, but didn’t succeed. Swanson took a timeout with six seconds remaining, and called a screen play with the hope of an open look from 3-point range. The set took too long to mature, and while a shot did go up, it wasn’t on target.

It was a dagger for Toutle after carrying momentum for the larger part of 16 minutes.

The Ducks knew Willapa Valley could shoot 3s, and the Vikings did, converting five perimeter shots in the first half. The distance shooting created a wide margin early, but the Ducks closed it to five points by the end of the first quarter. Valley had a nine-point lead at halftime, which was cut to three by the end of the third quarter.

“They hit one at the end of the third quarter, which was a big shot,” Swanson said. “We have to bounce back. We have a day to prep and get ready to go.”

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Sports Reporter

Jason is a journeyman sports reporter who has covered the Golden State Warriors, Oakland A's, along with a heavy emphasis on the Oakland Raiders. He comes to Cowlitz County from Oakland, Calif. and is a loving father.

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