Peninsula’s Shania Moananu, from, presses to the key defended by Edmond’s Maggie Salas, left, and Jada Walters on Saturday at Peninsula College. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)

Peninsula’s Shania Moananu, from, presses to the key defended by Edmond’s Maggie Salas, left, and Jada Walters on Saturday at Peninsula College. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)

WOMEN’S COLLEGE BASKETBALL: Peninsula finds a way, wins 12th straight through defense

PORT ANGELES — The Peninsula College women’s basketball team remained unbeaten in the North Region, digging out of an early hole against a fired-up second-place Edmonds and then fending the Tritons off during a tense fourth quarter for a 65-57 victory.

It wasn’t always pretty with the teams combining to shoot 33 percent from the floor, but the Pirates got a lot of production out of Jenilee Donovan early and Alexa Mackey late to pull out the win. And throughout the game, they played tough defense, holding Edmonds to just 28.8 percent shooting from the floor (19-for-66).

Edmonds came in determined to tie the Pirates for first place in the North, as for the second straight week, the Pirates had to fight off a challenger to remain all alone in first. On Jan. 31, Peninsula had to hold off Shoreline, which also came into Port Angeles looking for a share of first place.

It was the 12th straight win for the No. 4-ranked Pirates, who have not lost since Dec. 10.

“That was tough,” said Peninsula coach Alison Crumb. “That was rough for us. The game felt sticky.” She said neither team could get in much of a rhythm offensively and she credited her team for winning with defense when it had to. She said a lot of teams would fall apart on both ends with the shots not falling.

“Not this group,” she said. “They knew they needed to battle on the defensive end.”

Donovan, who scored a bunch of her baskets on pretty shake-and-bake moves to the rim, said early in the game, Edmonds “Wanted it in the first half.

“In the second half, we wanted it,” she said.

She said with the team struggling from the floor in the first half, she decided to make some plays on the offensive end.

“I had to bring my all to this game,” Donovan said. “I give all the credit to Edmonds.”

Edmonds, which came in to the contest just one game behind 9-0 Peninsula (16-2 overall), got up 15-9 early looking to seize a share of first place, but Donovan scored nine points in the first half as the Pirates came back to take a 29-26 lead into the break.

The Pirates finished the third quarter on a 7-0 run to take a 46-37 lead into the fourth. Crumb said Mackey had a difficult first half, but she took over the fourth quarter, scoring nine points and pulling down three rebounds in the final stanza, several on underhanded scoop shots on strong moves to the basket.

Peninsula could never fully run away from the Tritons with the Pirates’ biggest lead reaching 11 points. But, the Pirates also never allowed Edmonds to go on any runs or get closer than seven points the fourth. The Pirates didn’t shoot that great for the game but they were 7-for-13 (53.8 percent) from the floor in that crucial fourth quarter, with Mackey shooting 4-for-4 on her field goals.

Ciera Tugado Agasiva led the Pirates with 15 points, shooting 7-for-8 from the free-throw line, while Mackey finished with 13 points to go with eight rebounds. Donovan had 11 points and Shania Moananu 10 to go with three steals. Sequim’s Jelissa Julmist had nine points and 10 rebounds.

Peninsula has another tough game coming up, on the road Wednesday against Bellevue (6-3, 10-14).

Peninsula 65, Edmonds 57

ECC 15 11 11 20 — 57

PC 11 18 17 19 — 65

Edmonds (57) — Slippern 13, D. Jackson 13, Walters 15, Salas 8, Brown 4, Brucelas 2, K. Jackson 2.

Peninsula (65) — Agasiva 15, Mackey 13, Donovan 11, Moananu 10, Julmist 9, Suaava 5, Greene 2.

Peninsula’s Talia Marini, left, squeezes past Edmonds’ Keira Slippern during Saturday’s game in Port Angeles. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)

Peninsula’s Talia Marini, left, squeezes past Edmonds’ Keira Slippern during Saturday’s game in Port Angeles. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)

KEITH THORPE/PENINSULA DAILY NEWS 
Peninsula's Allie Greene, right, brings the ball into Edmonds territory as Edmonds' Jada Walters, follows along during Saturday's game at Peninsula College.
Peninsula’s Alexa Mackey, front, makes her break for the basket as Edmonds’ Kyanna Bruccelas, left, and Kayana Jackson keep watch on Saturday afternoon in Port Angeles. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)

Peninsula’s Alexa Mackey, front, makes her break for the basket as Edmonds’ Kyanna Bruccelas, left, and Kayana Jackson keep watch on Saturday afternoon in Port Angeles. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)

KEITH THORPE/PENINSULA DAILY NEWS 
Peninsula's Jelissa Julmist, right, works around the defense of Edmonds' Natalie Brown on Saturday in Port Angeles.

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