The Twin Falls Bruins girls basketball team defeated the Middleton Vikings 42-36 in the first round of the 4A state girls basketball tournament at Mountain View High on Thursday, snapping the nation’s longest winning streak at 72 games.
Twin Falls outscored Middleton 12-6 in the third quarter to take a 28-23 lead into the final frame. Middleton cut the lead down to two, to 38-36, with less than a minute to play, but the Bruins hit their free throws down the stretch and the Vikings were unable to score again.
“I don’t think it was the streak of 72 that got to them, I think it was the streak of three (straight state titles),” Middleton coach Andy Jones said.
Middleton lost starting guard Maya Ah You to a knee injury in the second quarter.
D’Rae Tullock had 13 points and 12 rebounds for the Vikings, while Mikayla Harris had eight points and 10 rebounds for the Bruins. Maddie Watkins added nine points off the bench in the win.
“People said ‘aren’t you upset you’re pulling Middleton in the first round?’ I said I’d rather face them with fresh legs,” Twin Falls coach Nancy Jones said. “My girls really believed they could win, and I think that made a big difference when it dipped a little bit.”
Middleton hadn’t lost since Nov. 16, 2010.
“It was bound to happen sometime, we just weren’t expecting it to be today,” Tullock said.
Twin Falls moves on to face Century for the right to move onto the state championship. Middleton will play 4A SIC foe Nampa. Century defeated Nampa in the first round Thursday afternoon.
“I think it’s going to be very tough for our girls,” Andy Jones said. “Sometimes when you have certain expectations and certain goals … (playing in the consolation bracket) wasn’t even in the back of anyone’s minds.”