Sports

Spartans top Seahawks in boys hoops heartstopper to advance to districts

Joey Blacker, Nick Edens and Greg Shea of Bainbridge battle for a rebound in action against Rainier Beach during the Spartans
Joey Blacker, Nick Edens and Greg Shea of Bainbridge battle for a rebound in action against Rainier Beach during the Spartans' final home game of the regular season.
— image credit: Brian Kelly / Bainbridge Island Review

Bainbridge beat Chief Sealth in a crucial loser-out game to advance in the Metro League tournament, and the win punched the Spartans’ ticket for a district-level game.

The Spartans slipped past Chief Sealth 53-51 in Bainbridge’s opening salvo in the Metro League boys basketball tournament Monday.

It was a gutty road win for Bainbridge. The Spartans had just played the Seahawks the week before, at Chief Sealth’s turf in the second-to-last game of the season, but fell 63-55.

Chief Sealth looked strong in the rematch. The Seahawks finished the first quarter in front, 14-11.

After Bainbridge busted a 20-point second quarter squirt, however, the road team took the lead, 31-22, at halftime.

Chief Sealth surged in the third. The Seahawks put up 20 against Bainbridge’s 9, and stepped into the fourth quarter ahead by two, 42-40.

The Spartans sank more shots in the fourth to win by a bucket.

“It’s been quite a ride with my young team,” said Bainbridge Coach Scott Orness.

“Every game is a learning experience whether we win or lose,” he said. “For the sophomores and juniors to play such quality minutes at the varsity level and pull out 11 wins so far this year is extraordinary, and I am proud of them.”

Orness said the Spartans’ backs were against the wall in the game against Chief Sealth.

“They are a senior-dominated team and we played a full 32 minutes of focused basketball,” he said.

Joey Blacker led all scorers with 23 points to pace Bainbridge.

Nick Edens chipped in another 13 for BHS, and Trent Schulte scored six.

Peter Lindsey contributed five points, Oskar Dieterich added four, and Blake Swanson had two for Bainbridge.

Bronte Corbray was high-scorer for Chief Sealth; he finished with 21.

Eastside Catholic overwhelmed Bainbridge 64-28 in the Spartans’ second game of the Metro League tournament the following night.

Bainbridge made it a contest in the first half, and trailed by one point at the end of the first quarter, 12-11. At halftime, the Crusaders led 26-22.

The Spartans collapsed in the third quarter, however, with just one point against EC’s 23.

The Crusaders stormed into the fourth quarter ahead 49-23, and held Bainbridge to five points before the buzzer.

Nick Edens led the Spartans with 12 points, and Trent Schulte contributed seven.

Kyle Jackson added five points for BHS, and Joey Blacker finished with four.

The Spartans wrapped up the regular season Friday, Feb. 1 and fell against Lakeside 78-40.

It was the third loss that made up a three-game, end-of-season skid.

Part of Bainbridge’s woes stemmed from the old what’s going around, comes around bug that’s been hitting many of the high school’s squads. The Spartans have been battling sickness since the end of December, and have had one or two players either out or struggling.

Against Lakeside, the Spartans fell in a hole early, trailing 20-11 at the end of the first quarter and 33-19 at halftime.

Things got decidedly worse in the third quarter, a 29-point Lions affair that left Bainbridge behind 62-31.

Lakeside had 11 players post points, and three players scored in double figures.

Blacker had 11 points. His fellow Spartans were held to single-digit scores (Dieterich, 8; Schulte, Swanson, Riley Irish, 4 each; Edens, Kyle Jackson, 3 apiece; Peter Lindsey, 2; and Greg Shea, 1).

Earlier, on Jan. 29, the Spartans faced Chief Sealth in Seattle and lost 63-55.

Bainbridge led 16-10 at the close of the first stanza, but the Seahawks flapped to a 29-27 advantage by halftime.

The two teams played nearly even in the third, and the situation soured for the Spartans in the fourth as Chief Sealth outscored BHS by seven, 21-14, in the quarter.

Edens poured in 25 points for Bainbridge. Blacker contributed 13, and Schulte added eight.

Swanson scored seven, and Dieterich had two.

“We played them tough,” Orness said.

“We did a nice job defensively but we missed a lot of easy first half shots.”

The Spartans then looked for an offensive turnaround in the second half.

“We came close,” Orness said. “We won the third quarter by one but lost the fourth by six.”

“I was proud of our effort and the growth they made in 32 minutes,” he said.

Bainbridge’s late season woes started against one of the state’s toughest teams.

On Senior Night, the Spartans hosted Rainier Beach, and the ungrateful visitors gifted Bainbridge with a 73-49 league loss.

The Vikings churned to a 14-4 first-quarter advantage, and connected on 5-of-18 shots.

Bainbridge hoisted 13 attempts from the field, but only two found twine. The two baskets by Swanson and Blacker amounted to all of the Spartans’ first-quarter offense.

The bad news for Bainbridge got worse in the following quarter.

Beach’s accuracy improved in the second, and the Vikings went 11-of-18. Will Dorsey hit 3-of-4, including a three-pointer, and his Beach teammate Shaqquan Aaron added 2-of-3, including a trey.

The Vikings led 38-19 at halftime.

Bainbridge mounted a comeback in the third — Edens unloaded, 5-of-8 shooting, a three-pointer, 11 points in all — and BHS outscored Rainier Beach 16-15 to narrow the gap to 53-35.

Aaron, the Vikings’ 6’7” junior guard, answered in the fourth with a dozen points of his own, including two three-pointers to seal the Rainier victory.

Edens finished with 20 points for Bainbridge.

Blacker scored 14, and Dieterich put in for 8. Swanson contributed five, and Schulte had two.

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