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Archive for the ‘Boys Basketball’ Category

“So, anything else you want to tell us, coach?” “Nope.” (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Well, it hasn’t been a full five months…

I swear, the next time Ron Bagby tells me he won an award will be the first.

The former Coupeville High School coach still wanders the hallways and gyms at the school, fulfilling his teacherly duties, and I’ve run into him on numerous occasions as winter turned into spring.

Yet, in typical low-key Bags style, he never once mentioned he was inducted into another Hall of Fame back in January.

I mean, once you’re in the totally made-up Coupeville Sports Hall o’ Fame, as he is, probably everything else kind of pales in comparison. I get it.

But, thanks to a tip from Carmen McFadyen, who got the news from her son Jason, who starred for football and basketball teams coached by Bags back in the day, who got the info from former teammate Dan Neider, I’m on top of things.

Five months late…

So, back in Jan., Bags snuck out of town, headed down the road to his former home, the far-flung outpost of Forks, and was inducted into the Spartan Basketball Hall of Fame.

And I’m gonna stop you right there.

Forks High School has a freakin’ REAL Hall of Fame for basketball and we here in Coupeville DO NOT.

Come on, people.

We have Jeff Stone, and Bill Riley, and Jeff Rhubottom, and the ’69-’70 Team o’ Death and Destruction, and 10,000 Keefe brothers, and Jack “The Zinger” Elzinga.

Then there’s Hawthorne Wolfe, the floppy-haired reincarnation of Pistol Pete, coming for all their scoring records, and on and on it goes.

And that’s only half the story, with the girls game giving us Makana Stone, and Novi Barron, and Marlene Grasser, with Maddie Big Time droppin’ half-court bombs and Julia Myers droppin’ forearm shivers.

I want a frickin’ real Hall of Fame!

But anyways.

Back in reality, or Forks at least, Bags was always kind of a big deal in the town long before the sparkly vampires brought in all the tourists.

In his younger days, he won a state track title in 1978, blistering the oval in the 100, and this on the heels of being a First-Team All-State running back for a team he helped propel deep into the playoffs.

So they know his name, and his game, in Forks.

During a doubleheader against Tenino this winter, the laconic one was immortalized again, this time for his play on the hardwood.

And for any of his students who watch him amble by, and think to themselves, “I could beat Bags,” no, you can’t, and yes, you’re an idiot.

Time may have (slightly) tamped down his hops, but he’d still annihilate you on the court … then never tell me about it.

Back when he was wearing the Forks shorty shorts, Bags tossed in 52 points against Tenino, setting a Far West League single-game record which stands to this day.

Just to put the cherry on top, his final bucket, coming in a game before the three-point line, came off of a steal, and the ensuing layup capped a 79-77 win for the Spartans.

At which point he exited the court, looked around at all the fans, and said, “Let us never speak of this again.”

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Coupeville boys basketball, which boasts nine players who will be seniors this coming season, went 5-0 this weekend, winning the Crescent Classic. (Mindy Grove photo)

The underclassmen join the action. (Photo courtesy Brad Sherman)

Right now, at this moment in time, they’re undefeated.

The high school boys basketball season is still months and months away, but that’s not stopping Coupeville from getting after it.

Prepping for an upcoming team camp, the Wolves traveled off-Island this weekend, and returned home as Crescent Classic champs.

Coupeville, facing off with Chimacum, Forks, and the host team, went 5-0 to nab the title.

Having traveled 154.8 miles round-trip to Crescent, the Wolves earned a win for every 31 miles.

CHS coach Brad Sherman had his full team at his disposal, with all nine returning full-time varsity players in attendance.

That group includes Jacobi Pilgrim, Jered Brown, Hawthorne Wolfe, Jean Lund-Olsen, Gavin Knoblich, Ulrik Wells, Mason Grove, Koa Davison, and Sean Toomey-Stout.

Also along for the trip were Daniel Olson and Xavier Murdy, who were swing players during the 2018-2019 season, and Tucker Hall.

After a season in which Coupeville had just one senior, the now-graduated Dane Lucero, the Wolves could boast nine 12th graders this winter.

The only underclassmen in the current varsity group are Olson, who will be a junior, and Wolfe and Murdy, who will be sophomores.

Their coach came away from the trip pleased with the results, and, more importantly, thrilled with the effort he saw from his players.

“Was a good opportunity for our guys to get out and play before camp,” Sherman said. “Good team basketball; really great team effort.”

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Dominic Coffman brings huge heart, and a dash of danger, to every sport he plays. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

Coffman, here kick-starting a fast break in middle school, will be a freshman at Coupeville High School this fall.

The most exciting player in middle school sports is headed to high school.

We’re going to let Dominic Coffman speak for himself here in a second, but I just have to say something first.

Over the past two years, no one in a CMS uniform has been quite as entertaining to watch play as he has been.

Coffman is a savage, and I mean that in the best possible way.

He comes with everything he has, and watching “The Dominator” in action is a treat.

Coffman goes flying into every play, whether on the football field, basketball court, or when he’s bouncing between events in track and field.

For example, other players may occasionally get a blocked shot on the hardwood.

At one point during his Coupeville Middle School days, Coffman chased down a play from behind, launched himself airborne, and managed to both reject the shot and bounce his shoe-clad foot off the back of the rival player’s head.

The second part was probably accidental. Doesn’t mean I didn’t enjoy it.

It was a thing of furious beauty, a testament to the fire Coffman brings to everything he does, and proof that he’ll be worth the price of admission when he invades Coupeville High School this fall.

The whirlwind wild man plans to continue playing all three of his sports, which is good news for Wolf fans (and writers who like a good foot-to-the-head moment).

“They keep me busy all year and with track and field it helps me get ready for football,” Coffman said. “With basketball, it helps me to get stronger and focus.”

While he enjoys all of his sports, gridiron action narrowly nips hoops as his favorite.

“I was six years old when my mom first put me in football,” Coffman said. “Then, when I learned to tackle kids that were two times bigger than me, it helped me to work hard and not to play with fear.”

While track and field can be a largely solitary sport, football and basketball involve groups of players working together to achieve success, something Coffman appreciates.

“They are team sports, so it helped me to learn to get along with others, build friendships and work hard for myself and the rest of the team,” he said. “Football and basketball show love for the game and for family.”

Coffman draws inspiration from fellow freshman-to-be Alex Murdy and current and former Wolf stars like Sean and Cameron Toomey-Stout.

All three are known for their dedication and hard work, something Coffman wants to emulate.

“My friend, Alex, he continues to be himself, not caring what other people think and always reminding me to be a team player doing my best and wanting others to do their best,” he said.

Cameron and Sean, I have watched them and how they push themselves,” Coffman added. “They have encouraged me and they are not afraid to be who they are.”

He also credits his parents for “always supporting and loving me and wanting me to be the best me I can become in everything I do,” and thanks “Ms. Z, Ms. Raven and Mr. Black” for their support in school.

Whether working in class, where he enjoys “math with Mr. DeArmond and history with Mr. Volkman,” or progressing as an athlete, Coffman is all about putting in work.

“All the stuff you can do to get better at my position and to see the face of my future coming true,” he said.

Coffman is working on increasing his speed and vertical jump, and has set goals of becoming a starter in football and “keeping my grades up, so I can still play sports.”

When he’s not at practice or involved in a game, he enjoys swimming, listening to hip hop, taking his Bernese Mountain Dog, Zion, for walks, and spending time with family and friends.

Ultimately, though, it all comes back around to sports, which drive him to be a well-rounded person, and one who plans to shine for the next four years.

“My strengths are my love for sports, my footwork, strength, and speed,” Coffman said.

“I want to work on my mental game and to get faster to get to the ball when I’m playing wide receiver,” he added “I also need to work out in the weight room, and get stronger.

Underestimate him at your own risk. Heart matters most in sports, and Coffman has a huge one.

“I might not be very tall, but I will continue to show it is not the height that matters,” he said. “It is my determination, getting stronger, and love of sports, that will prove who I will become.”

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Daylon Houston, who will be a freshman at Coupeville High School in the fall, plans to play soccer, football, and possibly basketball. (Photo courtesy Houston)

Daylon Houston doesn’t hesitate.

While he plans to play two, and possibly three, sports next year as a freshman at Coupeville High School, the lure of the pitch is something he embraces.

“Soccer is my life, soccer has always been my first choice,” Houston said. “It gives me the rush of being in nonstop play; the constant movement and aggression is awesome, and it motivates me to push myself.”

Daylon plans to join older brother Dawson, Coupeville’s starting quarterback, on the Wolf football team this fall.

After that, he may lace up his shoes with the basketball program, as well.

But when next spring rolls around, Houston is most looking forward to keeping his run as a soccer player going strong.

A veteran of four seasons of select soccer, the sport has helped him grow through elementary and middle school years.

“Being an athlete helps me stay on track; it’s a big part of me,” Houston said. “I enjoy being an athlete because when I’m out of sports I have no guidance, but in sports I have a strong sense of guidance.”

He’s looking to make an immediate impact for the Wolves on the soccer pitch, and is confident in his ever-growing skill-set.

“I have a high enough skill level to be a starting freshman on our varsity soccer team,” Houston said with conviction. “My goals are to go out on the field and push myself.”

The young booter credits the many coaches he’s worked with for helping support and guide him.

“When I was about eight, I had a soccer coach named Miguel, and he has helped me because I was going into that season saying I wanted to quit due to a bad coach from before,” Houston said. “But he guided me through a great season and put my soccer life back on track.

“Also, my current coach, Ben, who has led me and taught me the deeper concepts of the game of soccer.”

Along with his coaches, Houston praises his mom, Alia, for being the ultimate sounding board and support crew.

“She told me I should try out for select and so I did,” he said. “She helped me enter select and she was there every step of the way.

“These three people (my mom and coaches) all play a crucial role in making me the player I am today,” Houston added. “Without any of them, I probably wouldn’t be playing soccer to this day.”

When he’s not on the pitch, Houston enjoys working out, listening to music and spending time with his dog.

But, like his older brother, who will be heading into his senior season, he comes alive when playing sports.

“My strength as an athlete is that I never give up,” Houston said. “Even in the hardest of times I keep pushing myself.

“I can be in the last game of a season with absolutely no wins and go out there and give it my all,” he added. “The only thing I can think of to improve is be a part of a team and build strong chemistry with my teammates.”

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South Whidbey’s Kody Newman (22) was named Wednesday to the AP All-State boys basketball team.

They noticed us.

When big-city newspaper types pick high school all-star teams, they often hyper-focus on players who made it to the state tourney, or fall back on those who live in large, urban areas.

But someone must have done their research, because Wednesday, when the Associated Press announced its 2018-2019 All-State basketball teams, there was Whidbey Island sitting right on the same line with Seattle and Lynden.

South Whidbey senior guard Kody Newman, who burned down gyms all season while shooting three-balls from the parking lot, not only made the lineup, he was picked for the first team.

Lynden Christian’s hugely-hyped Cole Bajema, who is off to Michigan on a hoops scholarship next year, was tabbed as the 1A boys player of the year.

Joining the Lync star on the First Team were Newman, Antonio Salinas (Zillah), Mason Landdeck (Cashmere) and Hunter Ecklund (La Center).

Newman, who is bringing a stellar four-year prep sports career to a close this spring with one last tour of duty on the baseball field, scored his 1,000th point on the high school hardwood against Coupeville.

It came on a long three-ball, and, just to make things interesting, it’s believed he shot the ball with his eyes closed to up the danger factor.

True story.

Newman wasn’t the only Wolf foe honored Wednesday, just the one to get the biggest props.

Freshman Tyler Linhardt of King’s and junior Irena Korolenko of Cedar Park Christian were tabbed as Honorable Mention selections.

Oumou Toure, a senior at 3A Kamiakin, and Anton Watson, a senior at 4A Gonzaga Prep, were the state players of the year across all classifications (4A-2B).

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