Boys feel Bulldogs’ bite

The venues for the boys’ basketball team on Friday and Saturday were different, but coach Scott Orness’s verdict was the same for both games: “We played well but we couldn’t execute at crunch time,” he said.

“Not being able to handle pressure was our downfall.”

Despite holding narrow halftime leads in both games, the Spartans lost at home to West Seattle 66-55 on Friday, then dropped Saturday’s game at North Mason 59-46.

“We had some good individual performances and some glimpses of how we can play as a team,” he said. “We just need to come together.”

Teddy Picha and Travis Guterson came together late in the third quarter on Friday.

Gutters fed Picha for an easy shot under the hoop to give the Spartans their largest lead over the Indians at 39-30. But West Seattle scored 12 points in two minutes to take a 41-39 lead.

Guterson’s three-point shot near the end of the quarter gave Bainbridge a 42-41 lead, and when Henry Guterson opened the fourth quarter with another trey, the Spartans appeared as if they might be on their way to opening the Metro League season with a win.

Though Indian center and the team’s tallest player, Brett Mowrer, evened the score at 45-45 with two baskets soon afterward, he picked up his fourth foul with six minutes remaining.

But after Mike Botefuhr’s jump shot gave Bainbridge a 47-45 lead, West Seattle sandwiched a pair of treys around Travis Guterson’s short jumper to take a 51-49 lead halfway through the quarter. They extended the margin to 55-51 two minutes later, then the Spartans threw the ball away on their next two possessions and had to begin fouling in desperation.

Bainbridge had one final gasp when Mowrer finally fouled out with 49 seconds remaining. Picha sank two free throws to bring Bainbridge to within six at 61-55, then stole the inbounds pass.

But the Spartans missed the shot and the Indians ran out the game at the foul line. They outscored Bainbridge 25-13 in the fourth quarter.

Picha scored 20 and Travis Guterson added 16. Spencer Evans had seven, Henry Guterson six while Adam Brenneman and Botefuhr both had five.

Botefuhr dished out nine assists, while Picha had 13 rebounds and Spencer Evans added 10.

On the following evening, the Spartans held a 24-23 halftime advantage before the Bulldogs took a 40-35 lead at the end of three quarters and outscored Bainbridge 19-9 in the final eight minutes.

Picha had his third double-double in three games with 13 points and 10 rebounds. Travis Guterson sank four of nine from three-point range and a free throw to also finish with 13, as the pair have accounted for just over half of the team’s points through the team’s first three games.

“Teddy and Travis are gamers,” Orness said. “They have the competitiveness that you can’t coach. I hope that their personalities are contagious.”

Simon Pollack, Brenneman, and Botefuhr all finished with four, while Henry Guterson, Kevin Hebner and Evans added three apiece.

The Spartans played last night at Nathan Hale, and host Chief Sealth on Friday.

JV and C teams

North Mason JVs 76, Bainbridge JVs 61 – The Bulldogs broke open a tight ball game in the final three minutes as the Spartans were forced to foul and North Mason converted their opportunities from the foul line. That was somewhat of a game-long pattern, as the Bulldogs had 40 attempts to the Spartans’ 15, resulting in a 19-point differential. The Spartans also turned the ball over more than 20 times.

Mark Korsak led Bainbridge with 18 points, while Adam Knappe had eight, all in the final quarter. Zac Townsend made seven rebounds.

Bainbridge JVs 62, West Seattle JVs 47 – “We defended the paint better and played good transition offense, which led to some early baskets,” said Kirkwood of Friday’s home victory. Bainbridge took a 20-7 first quarter lead and extended it to as much as 30 points in the second half.

Schuyler Boone led the team with 17 points, while Jake Kanev had 12 and Korsak added eight.

Bainbridge “C” 54, North Mason “C” 38 – After a 9-9 first quarter tie, the Spartans jumped out to a 26-20 halftime lead and put the game away by outscoring the hosts 12-3 in the final quarter.

“Everybody got playing time,” said coach Chris White. “It helped having fresh legs toward the end.”

Grant Leslie had 18 points, John Grue added eight and Eddie Pasquale had seven.

Bainbridge “C” 51, West Seattle “C” 43 – The Spartans overcame a 10-point first half deficit at the Indians’ gym and held West Seattle to 13 points the rest of the way to win their season opener.

“We came out more aggressive on rebounds and played better defense,” said White. All but one player on the 13-man roster scored, and the one non-scorer had four rebounds.

Eric Baker led the team with nine points, while David Vander Hoek added seven.

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