EDMONDS — Peninsula College clamped down defensively and shared the ball and created better scoring opportunities as the Pirate men’s basketball team picked up their first win in a 78-47 blowout of Edmonds.
“We haven’t hated our defensive performances, but it was important for us to make sure that we brought a high level of energy into this game,” Peninsula coach Donald Rollman said.
“Edmonds is a tricky [team to] guard. They are a little looser than they have been in previous years, and you don’t always know what actions are coming.”
The Pirates limited the Tritons to 33-percent shooting from the field and forced 18 turnovers.
“There’s no question defense led the way for us,” Rollman said. “We did a good job of keeping the basketball in front of us, and we were able to turn them over by being aggressive.
“We could have done a better job of rebounding, but that’s a coach for you [never satisfied with their team’s performance].”
Offensively, Peninsula shot nearly 50 percent from the floor with 19 assists on 31 made baskets. Six Pirates scored nine or more points in the win.
“[Sharing the ball to create better shots] has been a big focus for us over the last week,” Rollman said. “We are not a selfish group;, we just needed to be more selfless and create more for each other. When we did that, we were able to get to the spots on the floor that we wanted and create better shots. And once you see a couple [of baskets] go [in], hopefully that will loose us up going forward.”
Ty Artis led Peninsula with 16 points and five assists. Jaylin Reed added 14 points, four assists, four steals and four rebounds, and Isaiah Sampson had 12 points and nine rebounds.
Vince McFarland drained 3 of 4 3-point shots off the bench, and Port Angeles’ Gary Johnson made his debut for the Pirates (1-2).
Peninsula hosts Bellevue at 4 p.m. Saturday in a game that will be livestreamed at https://www.nwacsports network.com/peninsula.
“It’s certainly the gauntlet,” Rollman said of the NWAC North Region schedule. “Opening up with Skagit and Everett and being so close and letting it slip out of our fingers. Now we get Bellevue, a team averaging nearly 90 points a game.
“This is by far the toughest season schedule I’ve seen. Goodness we are going to play each other four times, so we need to embrace it and enjoy it. Playing a good team every night will make us so much better.”
Sports reporter Michael Carman can be contacted at 360-406-0674 or [email protected] news.com.