Celisha Ralston (#30 white) of Taholah gets into position to grab a rebound against Selkirk on Wednesday morning of the 1B Girls Hardwood Classic at the Spokane Arena

Celisha Ralston (#30 white) of Taholah gets into position to grab a rebound against Selkirk on Wednesday morning of the 1B Girls Hardwood Classic at the Spokane Arena. Taholah lost 62-49. 

Ralston and Taholah fall to Selkirk in the first round of WIAA 1B Girls State Tournament 

SPOKANE - In four of the past five years, Colville tribal descendant Celisha Ralston of Taholah has helped lead her team to the WIAA 1B Girls State Tournament, not a feat easy to accomplish.

This year was no different.

Ralston and Taholah made their ninth overall state appearance since the 2006/2007 season.

After losing to Pomeroy (63-32) in the Regional round, Taholah would be up against Selkirk in a loser out/winner advance format.

Selkirk got up early after the first quarter 12-5 and went into halftime up 30-18.

Taholah kept hanging around though and trailed by 14 points as they entered the fourth quarter (45-31) started.

The Lady Chitwhins couldn’t get anything going for the first six minutes of the fourth but finally started to pick up the intensity with two minutes left.

They trailed 58-39 with 2:01 left in the game when the started knocking down shots and went on 10-4 run late but it was too late.

Selkirk held on for a 62-49 win over Taholah, ending the Lady Chitwhins season.

“It just took us too long to get started,” said Frank Pope, head coach for Taholah. “Getting down by 20 plus and having to fight and fight, we just ran out of time.”

Taholah will have a whole new team next year.

“It’s a senior led program. We’ve got six seniors and they just worked so hard this year,” said Pope. “They didn’t give up. I was really proud to see them end the game the way they did.”

Ralston finished with five rebounds, two assists and one steal on the day.

“I knew we were going to get back here I just didn’t think that it would end today,” said Ralston as she was trying to fight the tears. “Just can’t believe it’s over.”

Denise Curleybear led Taholah with 17 points. Nettie Mail scored 10 points for the Lady Chitwhins.

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