SPORTS: Port Townsend basketball team lives to play on by winning home finale

PORT TOWNSEND ¬­– The Port Townsend boys basketball team’s season lived on after a convincing 52-30 victory over Cedar Park Christian in loser-out Class 1A tri-district play on Tuesday night.

The same might not be true for Redskins senior point guard Dakotah Pine.

The three-year starter rolled his right ankle near the end of the first half and never returned on Tuesday.

Laying on a trainer’s table after the game, his ankle wrapped in ice, Pine said he wasn’t sure if he’d be able to play in the Redskins’ loser-out, winner-to-state game against University Prep on Saturday in Mountlake Terrace.

Head coach John Stroeder didn’t sound nearly as optimistic about his primary ball handler following the win.

“He’s probably done,” Stroeder said. “He’s tough. He wouldn’t have done that if [it wasn’t serious]. At least we got three days to work on figuring things out.

“People are going to have to step up. We got to go with what we got.”

Aside from Pine’s injury, just about everything else went right for the Redskins (19-3), who finished the season 12-0 at home.

Senior posts Parker McClelland and Walker Wilson each dropped in 17 points, the latter hitting 7-of-8 field goal attempts against an Eagles box-and-one defense focussed on shutting down the former.

Not that it worked all that well.

The Redskins hit 9-of-17 shots from the field in the first half and 22-of-42 for the game, working the ball methodically around Cedar Park’s gimmick defense most of the night.

Meanwhile, the Eagles offense missed its first 12 shots of the game as Port Townsend jumped out to a 21-10 halftime lead.

The Redskins piled it on from there, outscoring Cedar Park 22-6 in the third, eventually forcing the Eagles out of the box-and-one.

“Parker is the best player in the league, most teams should have to key off on him,” Wilson said. “It just gave us opportunities.

“All of us can score it; I trust all of us. Other guys just stepped up.”

McClelland also snagged 10 rebounds to notch a double-double, while Joe Aase added 11 points and five assists.

Yet the game belonged to Wilson and McClelland, who even connected on the play of the night when Wilson found McClelland on a cross-court inbounds play for a rim-rocking one-handed stuff near the end of the fourth quarter.

It was the perfect capper for a group of seniors, eight in all, who played their final game at Bruce Blevins Gymnasium.

“That was the first time we ran it successfully this season, so I’m pretty happy,” Wilson said of the long bomb. “Its nice for me to be the QB on that.”

Added McClelland, “We’ve always had that play. It’s just that whenever we run it someone throws it and it goes out of bounds or something. Finally it worked.

“That was a good way to cap it off.”

The night wasn’t quite as enjoyable for Stroeder, who got on his team several times during second-half timeouts for not moving the ball enough.

The four-year coach didn’t pull any punches after the game either, despite the fact his Redskins are one game away from the 1A state tournament in Yakima.

“I’m not happy at all,” he said, “not the way we played. We were too much one-on-one in the second half. We were up big and we were not running our stuff. That’s not acceptable for me. You put everything I’m saying in the paper, because I’m mad.

“Everybody thought it was going to be easier in the 1As [after Port Townsend moved down from 2A this offseason], it wasn’t. We got a tough game on Saturday. We just want to get to state. I’m not happy at all. We’re not going to win if we don’t play as a team.”

The injury to Pine didn’t make the abnormally dour Stroeder happy either. Although McClelland, for one, thought his point guard would be back by Saturday.

“He’s played through ankle stuff before, so I think he’ll be able to tough it out,” McClelland said.

“He’s a tough kid. If we don’t have him, it’s definitely going to be a blow. It will be something we’ll have to work around but hopefully he’ll be back on Saturday.”

Port Townsend 52, Cedar Park Chr. 30

Cedar Park Chr. 2 8 16 14 — 30

Port Townsend 11 10 22 9 — 52

Individual Scoring

Cedar Park Christian (30)

Duffy 5, McCullough 8, Zoellick 3, Doherty 5, Gutheil 9.

Port Townsend (52)

Aase 11, Thomas 3, Yourish 4, McClelland 17, Wilson 17.

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