PORT ANGELES — A 20-point win and a 20-point loss typically are met with much different reactions by the respective head coaches involved.
But a scrappy effort by eight-seed Sequim in a 55-35 Olympic League boys basketball tournament loss to top-seed Port Angeles had Wolves coach Greg Glasser encouraged and Roughriders’ coach Kasey Ulin disappointed.
“I liked that we didn’t cancel practice tomorrow,” Ulin said.
Port Angeles (11-2) will host No. 5 seed Central Kitsap at home at 5:15 p.m. in today’s semifinals.
“I’ll give Sequim a lot of credit, they played harder than us, they competed a little better,” Ulin said. “They did a really good job.”
Glasser was happier with his team’s effort compared with their first outing against their rivals, a 62-22 loss early in the season.
“They come at you and they keep coming at you for a full 32 minutes,” Glasser said of Port Angeles. “And you hope it’s a stopped clock. Last time the clock was running in the third quarter [a running clock is triggered by a 40-point lead], so I’m proud of our guys.”
“We battled, too. We answered the call. Last time we played them we got punched in the face and I’m not sure we’ve ever came out of the corner. But this time we went the full 15 rounds. We’ve had games where we’ve trailed by 12 or 14 at halftime and it spirals in the second half, and today we kept fighting until the end.”
The Wolves went toe-to-toe with Port Angeles in the early going, leading 10-9 late in the first quarter. But the Riders seized control of the lead and the game for good with a 14-0 run that started late in the opening frame and continued through much of the second quarter.
Xander Maestas had seven of his 13 points in the second quarter to spark Port Angeles.
“Xander’s effort stuck out to me individually,” Ulin said. “That kid plays his heart out every single night. You don’t want to take him for granted because of how natural that is for him.”
Up 27-12 at halftime, Port Angeles forced three Sequim turnovers to open the second half and pushed its lead to 20 after three quarters.
Wyatt Dunning scored nine of his game-high 19 points in the third for the Riders.
“He’s a guy that can score a few buckets in a row. He’s got that spurtability where he can rattle off eight or nine points at a stretch,” Ulin said.
John Vaara had six points and Adam Watkins seven, including a fourth-quarter 3, for Port Angeles.
“I thought our bigs were really solid, John and Adam were active inside and did some things for us,” Ulin said. “John was a presence, commanded the ball and defensively we were able to get some stops together. It’s amazing how many different shots he alters. He’s averaging like 3.5 blocks per game but he alters probably 10 other shots a game. Unfortunately, we didn’t do a great job of defensive rebounding so we gave them a lot of extra looks.”
Sequim was led by senior Erik Christiansen’s 18 points. Sophomore Isaiah Moore added 13.
The Wolves (3-8) will visit Bremerton in a loser-out game at 5 p.m. Monday.
“They are fast, PA is fast too,” Glasser said of the Knights. “Bremerton has five guys that will come at you and they like to throw long passes, fullcourt passes up the sideline. I liked our game plan against them last time, we hung with them for a half but we had trouble scoring which has been our issue all year.”
Port Angeles 55, Sequim 35
Sequim 10 2 10 13 — 35
PA 14 13 15 13 — 55
Sequim (35) — Christiansen 18, Moore 13, Possin 2, Wiker 2, Eaton, Mingoy, Green, Bess, Glasser