PORT ANGELES — The Peninsula College men nearly completed a wild comeback in the final minute and had a golden opportunity to tie the game with 11 seconds left, but the ball wouldn’t drop on a contested shot and the Pirates ended up falling to Bellevue 75-67.
Bellevue made six free throws in the final 10 seconds to salt the game away.
It was another frustrating loss for a Pirates team that has been close in three losses this year.
“A couple of shots here and there and we’d be 4-0 instead of 1-3,” said coach Donald Rollman.
Rollman said turnovers killed the Pirates in this loss. Peninsula ended up with 19 turnovers to 13 for Bellevue.
Rollman also said the Pirates got good shots, but they just didn’t fall. Peninsula shot 35.8 percent from the floor and 4-for-21 (19 percent) from 3-point range.
“It’s in our heads a little bit right now,” Rollman said. “It’s almost like writer’s block. Once we break through that block, we’re going to be really, really good.”
Rollman said the Pirates played hard and played great defense, keeping a Bellevue team that scored 101 against Whatcom to just 75 — and even that’s a bit misleading as Bellevue had 67 points with 10 seconds left. The Pirates outrebounded the Bulldogs 41-33 and held Bellevue to 40.6 percent shooting from the floor, including 25 percent from 3-point range.
Keith Seldon led the Pirates with 15 points, including five clutch points in the final minute, on 3-of-7 shooting from 3-point range. Vince McFarland had 13 points and seven rebounds, while Jaylin Reed had 10 points and seven rebounds, and Ty Artis had 10 points, five rebounds and five assists. Isaiah Sampson led the Pirates with eight rebounds to go with his eight points.
The game was close through much of the second half, though it seemed the Pirates might be done when Bellevue’s Kai Warren hit a 3-pointer as he was left unguarded on a fast break with 1:31 left to play. Port Angeles Roughriders basketball fans remember Warren well as a big scorer for the North Kitsap Vikings.
Warren’s shot gave Bellevue a 65-58 lead, but the Pirates roared back and came within inches of tying up the game. McFarland had a steal and got the ball to Jaylin Reed on a layup to make it 65-60 with a minute left.
After a missed free throw by Bellevue, the Pirates ran a fast break and got the ball to Seldon for a layup with 42 seconds left to make it 65-62.
Bellevue made a couple of free throws with 28 seconds left, but the Pirates got the ball quickly down the floor and found Seldon for a clutch 3-pointer with 20 seconds left to make it 67-65.
Seconds later, McFarland stole an inbounds pass down at the Pirates’ end of the floor with 11 seconds left, but his short shot from the key was contested and just wouldn’t drop. Bellevue got the rebound and the Pirates were forced to foul. The Bulldogs sank six free throws in the final few seconds for the final margin.
Peninsula (1-3) goes on the road to play Whatcom (0-3) on Wednesday. Saturday’s games was played without fans in the gym because of COVID-19 protocols in the women’s program last week. The women’s team had three games canceled.
Bellevue 75, Peninsula 67
Bellevue 35 40 — 75
PC 37 30 — 67
Bellevue (75) — Baker 24, Dunn 13, Olesen 13, Sze 10, Briceno 7, Warren 3, Peter 3, Johnson 2.