SEATTLE - The Bainbridge boys varsity basketball team brought home a critical and historically significant victory after defeating O’Dea 66-62 on the road Friday, Jan. 24.
“Bainbridge has only won three times in that gym in 13 years,” said Spartan Head Coach Scott Orness. “O’Dea was ranked number seven at the time by the Seattle Times.”
The Spartans trailed in the first quarter 15-12, but came back hard in the second and proceeded to outperform O’Dea in every subsequent quarter.
Orness said that the win was an important one for the team, and a sign of improvement and validation for the hard work they’d put in at practice.
“We’ve been close with all the traditional powerhouses in the Metro,” Orness said. “[We] lost by three to Franklin, lost in three OTs at Prep, and took Beach to the wire. Finally we took down one of the elite teams in O’Dea.”
“It feels good to beat a team that recruits from a 50-mile radius with our hometown island boys,” he added. “Our guys have a loyalty to each other that has deep roots, and they have one goal as a team in mind and that is to get to state.”
Orness added that it is sometimes easy for the players to get discouraged when facing such impressive talents in a highly competitive league, and that camaraderie and faith in each other remained crucial Spartan advantages.
“We face schools that are sometimes all-star teams,” he said. “If you look at Eastside, Beach, O’Dea and Franklin, you will find that many of their players moved from another high school.
“My guys believe in each other and understand the importance of being in the same fox hole and fighting for each other for a common goal,” he said.
“I can’t think of a more valuable life lesson.”
Blake Swanson led the team’s offensive efforts with 21 total game points.
Ben Beatie finished the game with 13 points. Oskar Dieterich managed 12 points total, while Joey Blacker scored a total of seven and Lyle Terry brought home six.
“Both O’Dea and us played almost perfect games,” Orness explained.
“We had five turnovers and they had four. We both shot 50 percent from the field, but we made them pay from the line hitting 11-out-of-13 free throws and going five-for-six in the fourth quarter with Blacker putting the game away with 20 seconds [to go] hitting two free throws, extending the lead to four.”