EVERETT — Malik Jackson and Roosevelt Williams Jr. cashed in from the free-throw line late as the No. 2 Peninsula College men stayed unbeaten in North Region play with an 84-81 triumph over the No. 3 Everett Trojans.
Wednesday night’s contest closed out the first half of league play for the first-place Pirates (7-0, 20-1) and served as the team’s 13th consecutive win.
The game, which saw 14 ties and 17 lead changes, wasn’t easy, according to coach Donald Rollman.
“Our toughness came out again,” Rollman said. “Everett played extremely well and they are a good team, but our poise was really good. We didn’t play a great first half, not terrible. We get the lead, they go on a big run, and it felt like we could crack or crumble there, but we didn’t freak out, we got to the rim, rebounded the ball. Our poise, pace and attention to detail elevated us.”
With 4:22 left in the game, Peninsula went cold from the floor up 79-74 and Everett tied the contest up at 79-all with 1:36 to play.
“Not one guy freaked out, including myself,” Rollman joked. “The huddle talk was positive, we were fine, deep breaths and execute.”
Jackson scored inside at the 1:17 mark to put Peninsula up.
“The action was really solid on that layup for Malik,” Rollman said. “He got an iso, took a couple dribbles on a back down and got the layup. We finished it out from the line from there. It was the best we shot from the line [21 of 25] all year long, and that’s a testament to our returners winning these close games.”
Jackson was 8 of 8 from the line with 20 points, nine rebounds, two assists and a block.
Williams Jr., named the NWAC Men’s Player of the Week earlier this week, added 24 points, eight rebounds, three steals and two assists.
“It’s really been a breakthrough for him emotionally, physically and mentally this season,” Rollman said.
The Pirates have a week off between games. They’ll host Bellevue on Wednesday.
Peninsula 84, Everett 81
Peninsula 37 47 — 84
Everett 39 42 — 81
Peninsula (84) — Williams Jr. 24, Jackson 20, Medlock 15, Onakpoma 14, Ervin 5, D’Amato 4, McCullough 2, Johnson, Dean, Olmstead.
Everett (81) — Smith 18, Molina 17, Fesiienko 15, Luke 11, Sayers 10, Penigar 4, Gaither 4, MacArthur 2.
Peninsula 77, Everett 40
EVERETT — Chasity Selden scored 19 points off the bench as the Pirates made short work of the last-place Trojans.
Peninsula (5-2, 13-4) rattled off a 12-0 run over the final five minutes of the first half to take control.
The run grew to 33-0 over nearly 14 minutes of game time and lasted until Everett hit a free throw at 1:07 of the third quarter.
Millie Long added 17 points, five rebounds, four steals and an assist.
Ituau Tuisaula had 16 points, 24 rebounds, four steals, four assists and a block.
The Pirates sit a game back of Shoreline (6-1, 14-6) after the first lap through North Region play.
Peninsula 77, Everett 40
Peninsula 12 22 23 20— 77
Everett 7 11 3 19— 40
Peninsula (77) — Selden 19, Long 17, Tuisaula 16, Kamae 8, Donovan 8, Hopson 1, Brown 1, Moss, Vaaia, Marini.
Everett (40) — Thoma 14, Trichler 8, Jones 8, Carroll 4, Hunt 4, Frunk 2.
Sports reporter/columnist Michael Carman can be contacted at mcarman@ peninsuladailynews.com.