The girls’ basketball team has been searching for the right chemistry throughout the season, and now they may finally have it.
Going into last Tuesday’s game, the Pirates had dropped their first three league games and were hoping to get back on track. Their opponent, Cascade Christian, came into the game looking to continue its recent dominance over Vashon, but the Pirates started out hot with a 16 -5 lead by the end of the first quarter. They would end up leading at the half, 24-13, and looking to extend that lead in the third quarter.
Cascade Christian did not go away quietly as they fought back deep into the fourth quarter and came within 2 points — but the Pirates were still able to put the game away, winning 42-38. Chloe Kuyper hit on three out of six 3-point shots, while Ella Koebelin hit four out of six and the Pirates finished the game shooting 40 percent from 3-point range. Coach Rob Kearns said that he “loved the effort.”
“When we move the ball around and make the extra pass to get wide open shots, we are really tough to beat,” he added.
The Pirates followed up their first league win in two years with a road game at Charles Wright. Playing in a smaller gym with a tough crowd and tough opponent, the Pirates struggled early on to match the physical play of the Tarriers. Led by senior Ruby Joy Pikes, Charles Wright dominated play in the first half, hitting five 3-pointers early, and got to the foul line where they shot 73 percent.
The Pirates eventually got going offensively, and a run in the second quarter allowed Vashon to get within 4 points right before the half. The Tarriers had the ball and were looking for a last-second shot, when Kuyper closed out too hard, contesting a 35-foot desperation shot and was called for a foul that rewarded Charles Wright with three free throws — all of which were made — pushing the halftime deficit to 7.
The second half became even more physical and the officials began to tighten up the calls. This led to more free throw trips for the Tarriers, and less of the fluid play that had helped get the Pirates back into the game earlier.
Poor shooting by the Pirates, both with field goals and free throws, once again made it difficult for them to come back. Vashon made a late rally in the fourth quarter but ultimately fell short, as the final score was 58-45.
Ella Koebelin, freshman point guard whose nickname is Kobe, loves basketball and has been playing since she was 5 years old. She has a goal to play college basketball as well as help her high school team make it to the state tournament. She wants to major in sports medicine and play for either the University of Washington or Gonzaga.
Lola Kuyper, freshman wing, is a multi-sport athlete, having also played volleyball for VHS. Lola is the younger sister of senior Chloe and has been around basketball for many years on Vashon. She would love to attend the University of Washington after high school and wants to go into sports medicine as well.
— Chris Koebelin is the parent of a VHS basketball player.