Warriors tame Tarriers in lopsided win
BY GERARDO BOLONG
On senior night for Jared Cattell, Spencer Howell, Zac VanderLey and Harry Hohimer, a strong message was delivered.
Playoff hopes for the Seattle Christian boys basketball team were buoyed in a 64-34 home devastation of Nisqually 1A foe Charles Wright Academy on Tues., Jan. 30.
The Warriors (3-4 league, 11-8 overall) close out the regular season at Cascade Christian of Puyallup on Tues., Feb. 6 with the chance of a third place and the last district spot on the offing. SC currently holds solo third place.
Warrior head coach Micheal Watts was pleased with the way the SC team responded in the complete control of a must-win situation.
"Our confidence is back and our team chemistry is better, again," he said.
The demolition job for the Warriors began after leading 33-28 with just more than five minutes left in the third quarter.
VanderLey notched a short fadeaway jump shot that was quickly followed by Connor Knack's 3-pointer and a 38-28 difference.
Defensive stops that often limited the Tarriers to one-and-done offensive possessions triggered a 7-1 Warrior surge that culminated with Howell's 3-point goal and a rebound basket that just beat the buzzer as Seattle Christian carried a 45-29 margin into the fourth quarter.
Despite being continually held and double teamed in the low post, VanderLey scored 16 points with 8-of-8 shooting including 6-of-6 in the fourth quarter while also grabbing seven rebounds.
"In the first half they were doubling," VanderLey said. "They backed off when our outside shooters kept making shots and I made some lay ups. I was also able to make all my free throws."
Alex Clear opened the fourth on a 3-point play that was followed by a Knack 3-point goal while being fouled in a corner. Knack converted the free throw as the Warriors steamrollered to a 61-29 lead on the way to the one-sided domination.
SC fans gave their home team a standing ovation when the final buzzer went off.
Howell responded with 12 points and seven rebounds after getting into the flow early in the first quarter.
"We just it together as a team," he said.
Besides avenging an earlier loss at Charles Wright, the resurgent Warriors have regained their previous form following a stretch of games that nearly eliminated them from any post season chances.
At one point, Seattle Christian was floundering at 1-4 in league play.
"Everything was just going badly for us," added Watts.
Trailing badly at Vashon Island, the Warriors notched 27 points in the fourth quarter after scoring only 27 points in the prior three quarters combined.
"Winning that game on a 3-point buzzer beater really started us back to playing the way we can," concluded Watts. "We're a dangerous team once we make the post season."
Cattell drove hard for 15 points and seven rebounds while Knack posted 10 points. Clear got open for eight points and Duncan Saggau nailed a shot from beyond the arc for his three points.
Michael Tucci scored nine points to lead Charles Wright.