Millers buzz Warriors 71-33 behind Russell's 29 points

EUGENE, Ore. -- Springfield's quest to win a third straight state championship began with a 71-33 victory over Lebanon at Matthew Knight Arena on Thursday afternoon.

Mercedes Russell scored 29 points and added eight rebounds and six blocks, as the Millers won their 18th straight game.

Springfield was in full control right from the start.

Niki Duncan's three pointer at the end of the first quarter gave the Millers a 20-2 lead and they never looked back. Duncan finished with 14 points.

Springfield continued to attack in the second and third quarter, as the Millers finished shooting 52.2 percent from the field.

"The only thing we can control is us," said Millers' head coach Bill Wagner. "We go out and do our thing. It doesn't matter who we play, what the score is, we just go out and do our thing.

"The girls did a great job of that for the first 24 minutes."

Just 24 minutes because Wagner pulled most of the starters in the fourth quarter.

"I think defensively we did really well," said Russell. "We shut down their shooters. We got to passes. Offensively we were clicking too."

Springfield will now face Hermiston in the semifinals, Friday at 1:30 PM.