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Vashon hoopsters split two games
In the last week, the Pirates dropped a game against the Seattle Christian Warriors and avenged last year’s loss to Auburn Adventist.
The defending state champion Seattle Christian Warriors showed they are still the team to beat on Feb. 2, grinding out a 51-38 win over the visiting Vashon Pirates.
Vashon went toe to toe with the champs, outscoring them by one point from the floor, but Seattle Christian shot 18 for 27 from the stripe — against the Pirates’ 4 for 10 — and the 14-point swing made the difference in the final score.
Tenacious defense was on display from both teams as each battled to contain the other’s key scorers.
The Pirates’ hustle and overall effort were of particular note, limiting the Warriors — who have averaged 63 points per game in Nisqually League play — to 51 points.
University of Nevada Wolfpack assistant coach Camille Williams, who was at the game, made a point of approaching the Vashon coaching staff after the game.
“I was not really sure what to expect, but you should be proud of the way your girls played,” she said. “They never gave up and fought hard to the very end.”
On offense, the Pirates showed patience in offensive sets, but twice in the first quarter an overabundance of patience led to 30-second shot clock violations.
“I asked the girls to commit to executing on offense,” said Coach Henry Porter. “Both times we ran out of time on the shot clock, we passed up open shots.”
Vashon scoring was led by Kelly Costello (15 points), who battled against fierce defensive pressure and double-teams the entire night. Chrissy Swope (7), Kiki Means (7), Cat Amick (4), Elisa Wendt (4) and Sophie Nespor (1) rounded out the Pirate scoring. Vashon had 38 team-wide rebounds (18 on offense), coupled with four blocks.
Seattle Christian has locked up the first seed in the league tournament, but there is a possibility of a rematch with Vashon based on the results of a game played yesterday, the results of which came too late for publication in this week’s Beachcomber.
The Pirates played a non-league game with the Auburn Adventist Academy Falcons on Thursday.
The Falcons won last year’s contest by two points, but the only time the Pirates were down by two this year was in the early going.
With the score 4-6 and five minutes remaining, the Pirates went on a furious 19-0 run to end the first quarter ahead 23-6.
It appeared that the intensity from the game two nights previous was held over as Vashon never let up, taking a 35-13 lead into the half.
The Pirates took their advantage to 25 points (53-38) to end the third quarter, and then turned the game over to the swing players, cruising to a 59-42 win.
Led by Wendt with 15, the Pirates scoring was balanced, with four players in double figures. Vashon had 13 steals, 14 assists and six blocked shots as a team. One block of note was delivered by Charlotte Kehoe, who stepped out to defend a baseline shot, swatting the ball into the stands. However, it was an unlikely “alley oop” pass from sophomore Cat Amick to Marya Munsey that drew bench-emptying cheers. Late in the fourth quarter on a breakaway, Amick lobbed the ball to Munsey, who was surrounded by defenders but still managed a deft tip of the ball for the basket.
The Pirate girls played only one game this week, traveling yesterday to Charles Wright Academy. The results of that game came too late for publication in this week’s Beachcomber.
The Senior Night game against Life Christian, originally planned for Friday, has been rescheduled to Feb. 16. Playoff games start Feb. 18, and game times will be listed on the Vashon High School Web site and in The Beachcomber.
— Gary Means is the father of Pirate Kiki Means.