COLLEGE BASKETBALL: Peninsula men knock off No. 1-ranked Skagit Valley in North Division opener

Pirate women also win handily in return to court

MOUNT VERNON — Peninsula dug in defensively and marched out of Mount Vernon with a 65-58 men’s basketball win over Skagit Valley, the No. 1 ranked team in the initial NWAC Men’s Basketball Coaches Poll.

Wednesday night’s win was the first game for the Pirates in more than a month after the conference delayed the start of Regional play from Jan. 5 to Jan. 17.

“We never wavered in our belief that we could compete and win this game,” Peninsula head coach Donald Rollman said. “We went up eight and they went on a 7-0 or 9-0 run and we called a timeout and got right back to it.

“Down the stretch, I thought we were tougher and Skagit’s physical. We just had six guys get out of ice baths [to recuperate].”

Rollman said his players’ mental toughness was on display.

“Our mentality was fantastic, we did make some mistakes with some silly fouls that made it a little harder than it had to be, but our mentality didn’t change. We moved on to the next action. Our effort and toughness was high level.”

Peninsula received a big boost off the bench from Rayshawn Harris. Harris totaled 19 points in 16 minutes, knocking down 3 of 6 3-point shots and grabbing seven rebounds.

“Shawn was fantastic for us,” Rollman said.

Mikey Medlock hit 5 of 6 free throws down the stretch to seal the game.

The Pirates also were boosted by Isaiah Sampson and Jaylin Reed overcoming ankle injuries to contribute.

“The guys said themselves ‘Skagit is No. 1, but we did what we were supposed to do. We prepared for two straight weeks to win this game. We were pumped in the locker room, but that’s what guys on the bench were saying. And it was challenging not playing for 30 days and not having class. You lose balance and structure, so we did a lot of team bonding and a lot of talking and communicating about what our program is about and that was a difference maker.”

The Pirates visit Olympic on Saturday. The Rangers are coached by former Peninsula standout Ryley Callaghan.

PC 65, Skagit Valley 58

PC33 32 — 65

SV27 31 — 58

Peninsula (65): Harris 19, Hunter-Holiday 14, Williams Jr. 13, Reed 8, Medlock 5, Garcia 2, Sampson 2, Dean 2,

Skagit Valley (58): Hall-Scriven 20, Collins 11, Gyan 7, Hayes 6, Miller 3, Flemming 3, Barrett 3, Cain 2, Clark 2, Harris 1

PC Women 68, Skagit Valley 41

MOUNT VERNON — The Pirates hounded the Cardinals into 26 turnovers, including 18 steals, as Peninsula returned with a composed victory over Skagit Valley on Wednesday.

Millie Long posted 11 points, five steals, five rebounds and four assists in the win.

Ituau Tuisaula added 11 points with six rebounds and Kelli-Jade Smith scored 11 with four steals, four rebounds and three steals.

The Pirates (1-0, 10-2) are scheduled to play Olympic on Saturday.

PC 68, Skagit Valley 41

PC 19 14 22 13 — 68

SV 9 12 10 10 — 41

Peninsula (68): Long 11, Tuisaula 11, Smith 11, Little 9, Cabatbat 8, Kaganak 6, Kamae 5, Glasser 4, Cooke 2, Brown 1, Wheeler, Brown.

Skagit Valley (41): Plautz 9, Watson 8, Allison 7, Gonzalez 4, Buchert 4, Johnson 4, Fefelove 3, Tomita 2.

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