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Peninsula Daily News
PORT ANGELES — After an impressive start in the NWAACC North Division, the Peninsula Pirates are in a bit of a slump.
Peninsula College dropped its third straight game, losing to Edmonds 91-81 Wednesday night.
“It was a tough loss,” Peninsula coach Lance Von Vogt said.
“We’re not playing our best basketball right now. We need to get back to the basics.”
Of course, Edmonds isn’t the team you want to face when you’re struggling.
The Tritons are 9-0 in division play (19-2 overall) and have two of the NWAACC’s top scorers in Shaq McKissic and Ricardo Maxwell.
“We were too loose with the ball, and you can’t do that against really good teams like Edmonds,” Von Vogt said.
“[McKissic] is a special talent, a special player, and he made big plays down the stretch. Ricardo Maxwell also made huge plays down the stretch.”
McKissic, who scored 46 points against Skagit Valley last week, finished with a game-high 26 points, while Maxwell scored 23 points and had nine assists and eight rebounds.
The Tritons also got 15 points from Tony Montano and 12 off the bench by Tony Peloquin.
“They’ve got that truck rolling,” Von Vogt said of Edmonds.
“Everyone on that team knows their role and plays it well.”
Von Vogt said that one of the reasons Peninsula isn’t as fine-tuned as the Tritons is its lineup is constantly fluctuating.
“We’ve only had our full lineup for probably two and a half games all year,” he said.
“We’ve started nine different players.”
On Wednesday, the Pirates welcomed back Daniel Sims, who missed a few games with an ankle injury, but they were also without Matt Visser, who is nursing an knee injury.
“That’s just been our season,” Von Vogt said.
“I hope we get a few games down the stretch where we have all our guys and we can get some cohesion.”
Sims scored nine points and went 3 for 5 on 3-pointers, dished out five assists with just one turnover in 27 minutes.
“I thought he did some nice things and played within himself,” Von Vogt said of Sims’ return.
Djuan Smith led Peninsula with 24 points, to go along with 10 rebounds and five assists. Xavier Bazile added 16 points, but also had six turnovers.
Salim Gloyd, who is second in the NWAACC in rebounding, grabbed 11 boards and scored nine points.
TreShawn King Dunbar scored eight points and dished out eight assists.
Along with the always changing roster, Von Vogt said the Pirates have also struggled with a lack of consistency on the floor, whether it’s missing a key blockout and not rotating on a ball screen on defense, or turnovers and bad shots on offense.
When Peninsula does get rolling, it will then go through a spurt where it stumbles.
“We’re not sustaining the rhythm,” Von Vogt said.
“We got off to a good start [Wednesday], but then we follow it with three or four minutes of turnovers and poor shots.”
The Pirates (5-4, 14-8) travel to Mount Vernon to face Skagit Valley (2-7, 9-13) on Saturday.
With just five games remaining in the regular season, the importance of every contest is magnified.
“We just need to get a win,” Von Vogt said.
“We better get our rhythm back in the next three weeks or we’re going to be sitting at home [during the playoffs].”