Port Angeles’ Parker Nickerson, front, looks for the net as Sammamish’s Barry Morrissette puts up a defense during Wednesday evening’s game at Port Angeles High School. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)

Port Angeles’ Parker Nickerson, front, looks for the net as Sammamish’s Barry Morrissette puts up a defense during Wednesday evening’s game at Port Angeles High School. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)

BOYS BASKETBALL: (Updated) Roughriders rally from 13-point 4th quarter deficit, beat Sammamish

Shamp scores 29 in opener

PORT ANGELES — In all of the improbable comeback victories in the history of the Port Angeles High School gym, this one was one of the most improbable in a long, long time.

The Port Angeles boys basketball team was down 13 points — 62-49 — to Sammamish on Wednesday night with just 3:56 left in the game. They had shot poorly all game and struggled to contain the Redhawks’ star player, Ravin Showki.

Then, the Roughriders, behind a swarming defense, created a series of turnovers and scored 11 points in just 37 seconds. They went on to outscore the Redhawks 19-5 down the stretch to pull out a crazy 68-67 season-opening victory.

Isaiah Shamp, who poured in 29 points and had two huge steals in the fourth quarter, scored the game-winning basket wth 24 seconds left.

“We came together as a team and didn’t give up,” Shamp said. “It’s basketball. It can happen.”

“We kept believing. We kept fighting,” said coach Kasey Ulin. “They fought, they played hard. They played for each other.”

The Riders struggled mightily with their shooting much of the game and trailed the Redhawks for roughly 90 percent of the game.

Sammamish held a 37-24 lead at the half and maintained a double-digit lead through most of the second half. Ulin said in addition to the rough shooting night, the Riders didn’t always show good discipline on defense and weren’t rebounding well at times.

“I really challenged them at halftime,” Ulin said. “They really responded in the fourth quarter. I told them (during a late timeout) that I didn’t care what happened the rest of the game, I was really proud of them.”

Port Angeles had a couple of mini-runs in the second half, starting the third on a 6-0 run and putting together a 9-0 run at the end of the third and beginning of the fourth quarter to make it 48-43.

The Redhawks always seemed to have an answer — especially with Showki driving the lane — and gradually rebuilt that lead back up to 62-49 with 3:56 left.

Then the Riders unleashed their version of hell.

Gus Halberg began the furious rally with a 3-pointer, then a Shamp steal led to another Halberg bucket.

Parker Nickerson, who didn’t have a good shooting game most of the night, contributed big time when it counted, stealing the ball, hitting a bucket on a drive and drawing a foul for a three-point play.

Donovan Heins came off the bench and made a steal and hit a fast-break bucket and was fouled for another three-point play to make it 62-60.

All of that happened in just 37 seconds.

After Halberg blocked a Sammamish shot, the Redhawks finally responded with a basket, but Halberg responded himself with a pair of free throws before fouling out. Nickerson followed with a drive and hit a basket to tie the game at 64-64. Just as importantly, he drew a foul from Showki, fouling him out of the game with 2:18 left. With Showki and his 23 points on the bench, that severely limited Sammamish’s offensive options in the final two minutes.

Shamp made another steal and hit a bucket to make it 66-64 with 1:46 left. It was the Riders’ first lead since theywere up 4-2 in the first couple of minutes of the game. Sammamish then got a clutch 3-pointer from Barry Morrissette to retake the lead at 67-66.

Shamp got the final bucket of the game at 68-67, but the Port Angeles defense held Sammamish scoreless on the Redhawks’ final possession.

Nickerson finished with 17 points. In addition to Heins’ contribution off the bench, Ulin gave credit to William Ruddell for coming off the bench to score four straight points in the second half.

Port Angeles (1-0) gets a long break before playing again Dec. 8 with a league opener at Bremerton.

Port Angeles 68, Sammamish 67

Samm. 17 20 11 19— 67

PA 12 12 17 27— 68

Samammish (67) — Showki 23, Morrissette 14, Boddie 12, Kariuki 8, Reed 5, Layton 4, Bruels 1.

Port Angeles (68) — Shamp 29, Nickerson 17, Halberg 11, Dunning 4, Ruddell 4, Heins 3.

________

Sports Editor Pierre LaBossiere can be contacted at 360-417-3525 or plabossiere@peninsuladailynews.com.

Port Angeles’ Gus Halberg, left, drives down court paced by Sammamish’s Rakin Showki on Wednesday night in Port Angeles. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)

Port Angeles’ Gus Halberg, left, drives down court paced by Sammamish’s Rakin Showki on Wednesday night in Port Angeles. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)

Port Angeles’ Dallas Dunning is pursued by Sammamish’s Hudson Reed during Wednesday’s game in Port Angeles. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)

Port Angeles’ Dallas Dunning is pursued by Sammamish’s Hudson Reed during Wednesday’s game in Port Angeles. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)

Port Angeles’ Kason Albaugh, right, moves the ball as Sammamish’s Anthony Boddie follows along on Wednesday at Port Angeles High School. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)

Port Angeles’ Kason Albaugh, right, moves the ball as Sammamish’s Anthony Boddie follows along on Wednesday at Port Angeles High School. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)

Port Angeles’ Isiah Shamp, right, pushes for the hoop over the defense of Sammamish’s Barry Morrissette, left, and Hudson Reed on Wednesday in Port Angeles. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)

Port Angeles’ Isiah Shamp, right, pushes for the hoop over the defense of Sammamish’s Barry Morrissette, left, and Hudson Reed on Wednesday in Port Angeles. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)

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