Sports

Hoopsters ranked at top of league

Jessie Norton, pictured shooting a basket last season, recently scored almost every time he touched the ball. - Rik Forschmiedt Photo
Jessie Norton, pictured shooting a basket last season, recently scored almost every time he touched the ball.
— image credit: Rik Forschmiedt Photo

By EZRA LACINA

The Pirates are undefeated so far and are ranked number one in the Nisqually League.

The most recent competition included two road games at Auburn Adventist and Cascade Christian. The Pirates were victorious in both games, defeating Auburn Adventist, 77-51, and Cascade Christian, 62-38.

The Pirates faced the Auburn Adventist Falcons in a non-league meeting. The game started off well for Vashon, with senior Owen Brenno scoring two quick inside buckets, but the Falcons answered with scores of their own.

The two teams traded scores for most of the first quarter, but then Vashon junior Jessie Norton started scoring almost every time he touched the ball. At the end of the first quarter, the Pirates held a narrow lead with a score of 21-17.

In the second quarter, the Pirates started to play great defense. Norton had two great blocked shots, and 5’10” junior Ian Stewart impressively blocked a 6-foot, 5-inch center for the Falcons. Norton continued to drive the lane with authority, sinking almost everything he put up. Sophomore Sam Yates and Stewart also added to the scoring frenzy, with the defense focusing on Norton and leaving them open. When the first half came to a close, the Pirates found themselves winning, 45-26.

The second half revealed more Pirate dominants. Sophomore Noah Chee started the Pirates off with an excellent spin move layup. The Falcons were outmatched in every way. The Pirates were faster, smarter and more skilled, and the Falcons had no answer for stopping Norton.

The game ended with the Pirates slaying the Falcons, 77-51.

In the victory, Norton set a new school scoring record, scoring 39 points and breaking the previous record of 38 set by former Pirate star Alex Wegner.

Two days later the Pirates traveled to Cascade Christian for a league rivalry game against the Cougars.

The Pirates started off a little flat, but quickly turned it around, led by Yates and Norton. The Cougars were playing a rough style of defense, hand checking Pirate players up and down the court. At some points it looked like they thought it was a football game.

Despite the rough style of play, the Pirates managed to score with great efficiency. After one quarter, Vashon was winning, 17-10.

In the second quarter, Vashon played amazing defense, allowing only 4 points. Norton and Yates continued to score with consistency. With half of the game in the books, the score read Vashon 29, Cascade 14.

Vashon maintained a commanding lead through the third quarter, beating the Cougars at both ends of the court. Norton capped off the quarter hitting an NBA-range 3-pointer to beat the buzzer.

As the final period began, it was clear the Pirates were on their way to a win, but they didn’t let up on intensity. With 1:54 left in the game, coach Andy Sears sent in the bench. As the final seconds ticked off the clock, the Vashon students started to chant “200! 200!” as this victory was the 200th for Sears.

Yates led the Pirates, scoring 26, and Norton followed him with 23, going 9 for 9.

The Pirates will play at home against Life Christian at 7 p.m. Friday.

— Ezra Lacina is The Riptide’s sports editor.

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