SEQUIM — Sequim scrapped out a 51-47 boys basketball win over Olympic at home Tuesday in a game that decided the Olympic League 2A Division’s third seed to the district tournament.
The Wolves (7-4, 12-7) clamped down defensively after halftime, allowing just nine second-quarter points and five in the fourth quarter to erase a 33-27 Trojans lead at intermission.
“The kids just continued to fight,” Sequim coach Greg Glasser said.
“It was a pretty low-scoring game. When you get down eight or so in the first half you worry about the mental toughness of your kids and they responded.”
Glasser credited assistant coach Art Green for the halftime idea to switch to a quicker, ball-pressure defense.
“Coach Art Green came up with that idea at halftime and it was a game-changer for us,” Glasser said.
“One of the biggest plays of the game, I think it was when he took the lead for the first time, Erik Christiansen stole the ball at halfcourt, we were really denying the ball, and he scored off of it. So we did turn some steals into quick baskets.”
Brandon Barron had a look at a tying 3-point basket late for the Trojans, but the shot rimmed in and out.
Sequim was led by Nate Despain’s 25 points. Despain hit on 9 of 18 shots from the floor, including 3 of 7 on 3-point tries, and also sank all four of his free throw attempts.
“The numbers he has been putting up have been great for us offensively,” Glasser said. “We have to have him scoring. At the end of the game, he locked down Brandon Barron, one of the most dynamic guards in the league. And Nate sees a challenge like that and he wants it. During one of the timeouts he said ‘Coach, let’s go man, I want to guard Brandon’,”
Despain added three assists and two steals.
The Wolves as a team assisted on 13 of 20 made shots and swiped 13 steals to Olympic’s five.
Sequim will wrap the regular season tonight with a chance to spoil Port Angeles’ shot at the league title, but Glasser said he doesn’t want to approach the game with that thought in mind.
“Honestly, I really feel like we have a good relationship with [Port Angeles coach] Kasey [Ulin] and with [North Kitsap coach] Scott [Orness],” Glasser said. “We aren’t looking to play spoiler, we are looking to play our best basketball.
“Our focus has changed since that first PA game [a 74-29 Port Angeles win Jan. 8]. A lot of the time you go into those games and you are focused on beating your opponent and you can lose sight of the play right in front of you. We’ve talked the last few weeks about that play right in front of you and making the most of it.”
The Wolves will open district play on the road against the South Puget Sound League No. 6 on Wednesday.
Sequim 51, Olympic 47
Olympic 13 20 9 15— 47
Sequim 14 13 13 11— 51
Olympic (47) — Barron 15, Morgan 10, White 8, Brehmer 7, McInnis 4, Talarico 3, Kinsfather.
Sequim (51) — N. Despain 25, Christiansen 8, Whitney 4, Rollness 4, Langston 3, Eaton 2, D. Despain 2, Cowan 2, Young 1, Wiker, Lewis.
Port Angeles 73, Bremerton 44
BREMERTON — The Roughriders defended well, moved the ball inside against a number of zone looks and controlled the game in a win over the Knights on Tuesday.
“The guys came out and played with a sense of urgency,” Port Angeles coach Kasey Ulin said. “We caused some early turnovers, jumped on them early and were active. Our ball movement was fantastic, they showed us different zones, and we attacked gaps, we got the shots we wanted and we played hard.”
Garrett Edwards and Liam Clark each posted double-doubles, with Edwards scoring 16 points and grabbing 11 boards and Clark scoring 12 with 15 rebounds.
“Garrett and Liam were excellent inside flashing to the post and rebounding,” Ulin said. “We got a lot of points in the paint by attacking gaps, moving them side to side.”
Ulin said the Riders outrebounded Bremerton 58-30, including 24 offensive rebounds which Ulin called “phenomenal,” and caused 22 turnovers by the Knights.
Kyle Benedict added 14 points and Payton Schmidt had 11.
“The guys were dialed in, that’s something we’ve talked about, they deserve a lot of credit for remaining focused on one game at a time,” Ulin said.
Port Angeles (10-1, 15-4, RPI No. 9) can seal a share of the Olympic League 2A Division title with a win over rival Sequim tonight and win the title outright if North Kitsap (10-1, 16-3, RPI No. 3) is upset by by North Mason tonight.
“I imagine they’ll play their best game of the year,” Ulin said of Sequim. “[Port Angeles-Sequim] games have been closer and more competitive in Sequim, Greg [Glasser] will have them ready, Nate [Despain]] is one of the best players in the league and they just beat Olympic. They’ll be fired up.
If Port Angeles and North Kitsap tie for first, they’ll play a one-game tiebreaker against the Vikings at Kingston High School at 2 p.m. Saturday to decide which team earns the top seed to districts and a first-round bye.
Port Angeles 73, Bremerton 44
PA 16 27 19 11 — 73
Brem. 7 16 11 10 — 44
Port Angeles (73) — Edwards 16, Benedict 14, L. Clark 12, Schmidt 11, Kathol 6, Johnson 5, Cobb 5, Long 3, Nickerson 3, Methner 2, Jarnagin, Bowechop, D. Clark.
Forks 76, Elma 46
FORKS — The Spartans celebrated their seniors — all eight of them — with a 30-point Evergreen League win over the Eagles.
“We got to honor all of our seniors, they all got to come off the floor to a standing ovation, which they all deserved,” Forks coach Rick Gooding said.
Elma hung tight early in the game, but the Spartans created separation before halftime and in the third quarter.
“It was a tight game in the first half, [Elma] were up two in the second quarter before we went on a run and were up 15 at halftime,” Gooding said.
Senior Seth Johnson led all scorers with 27 for Forks, 13 of those in the first quarter.
“Seth was getting to the rack,” Gooding said.
Senior Braton Armas added 15 points and senior Joseph Reaume had 10.
Gooding also praised Jerome Eastman, a senior who had eight points, along with senior Iziah Morton for their play.
Cort Prose, another Forks senior, impressed Gooding.
“Cort Prose is getting over strep throat and missed practice [Monday], Gooding said.”He stepped up as a captain and told me he wanted a senior who doesn’t get to start to start in his place on senior night, so I’m proud of him for that.”
The Spartans (6-1, 15-4) will look to wrap up the outright Evergreen League title with a win at Hoquiam (5-2, 10-9) on Friday.
Forks 76, Elma 46
Elma 15 10 8 13— 46
Forks 18 22 22 14— 76
Elma (46) — Torres 2, Jacobson 7, Moore 8, Vollan 8, Edenstrom 2, Johnston 2, Schneider 6, Jones 4, Aho 7.
Forks (76) — Johnson 27, Reaume 10, Baar, Ness 2, Baysinger 8, Flores, Armas 15, Olson, Prose 2, Eastman 8, Morton 4.
Compiled from team reports. Email scores to [email protected] or phone 360-417-3525.