Posts Tagged ‘Boys Basketball’

Hawthorne Wolfe dropped 21 points Saturday as Coupeville ran Port Townsend off the floor. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

It was exactly what Brad Sherman was looking for from his team.

Ending a long, tough week with an explosion of joy, the Coupeville High School boys varsity basketball squad put together one of its best games of the season Saturday night.

Playing for the fourth time in six days, the Wolves picked up 57 points from their Three Musketeers, played inspired second-half defense, and cruised past visiting Port Townsend 79-66.

The non-conference win snaps a five-game losing skid for Coupeville and lifts it to 5-10 on the season heading into the stretch run.

The Wolves, who are fighting for one of the final two playoff spots from the North Sound Conference, have three regular season games left on the schedule.

After back-to-back home games against South Whidbey (Jan. 28) and Granite Falls (Jan. 31), CHS travels to Sultan Feb. 4.

If the Wolves can replicate how they played Saturday, they’ll punch that postseason ticket.

Facing off with a RedHawks team which has given it major trouble in recent years, Coupeville came out firing on all cylinders.

The Wolves got balanced scoring, with sophomores Xavier Murdy and Hawthorne Wolfe dropping in 22 and 21 points respectively, while senior gunner Mason Grove added 14.

But it was the team’s play on the other end of the floor which brought the biggest smile to Sherman’s face.

“Defensively, it was a really great night for us,” the CHS coach said. “The kids responded in a big way after a tough week, and played with a lot of scrappiness and energy.”

Coming off a week in which they had to face hot-shooting Cedar Park Christian twice, wrapped around a rumble with state title contender King’s, Saturday’s match-up was Coupeville’s best shot at garnering a win.

Achieving one of Sherman’s top goals — playing four solid quarters, with no letdowns — the Wolves went toe-to-toe with Port Townsend from the opening tip.

RedHawk senior Noa Montoya played out of his mind in the game’s first eight minutes, banging home 16 of his game-high 27 points, while hitting one eye-popping shot after another.

But, as good as he was in the early going, Coupeville slowed Port Townsend’s main man after the first break, mainly by making him work like a devil to get his shot off.

The Wolves responded to Montoya’s hail of shots by spreading out the offensive love, with five different players rattling home a bucket in the opening frame.

Wolfe, Grove, and Gavin Knoblich all nailed three-balls, with Wolfe’s trey being set up by a sizzlin’ cross-court pass from Grove which threaded its way between multiple defenders on its journey.

Coupeville pulled within a single point twice in the second quarter, but couldn’t seem to get over the hump, eventually falling behind 40-33.

Enter Ulrik Wells, and key the comeback music.

The CHS big man pulled off a three-point play the hard way, banking in a short runner, then adding a free throw, and the fire was lit.

Back-to-back shiver-inducing plays from a rampaging Murdy — a three-ball on the move, then a steal and breakaway bucket — really kicked things into gear, and Coupeville closed the half on a 13-0 run.

Even with top rebounder Sean Toomey-Stout sidelined with first-half foul trouble, the Wolves crashed the boards hard, with Koa Davison capping things with a put-back off of an offensive board he ripped free from a rival’s hands.

The joy ride continued into the third quarter, with Murdy popping another trey, then slipping a pair of free throws through the twines.

With 18 straight points on the board and their biggest lead at 51-40, the Wolves looked golden.

Then, they stumbled for a second or two.

Montoya slipped away from his defender for a blink of an eye, arcing a three-ball to pay dirt, and Port Townsend was suddenly off on its own 13-0 tear, reclaiming the lead and the momentum.

To which the Wolves said, not today, my man, not today.

Grove made the net whisper sweet nothings with an elegant trey from the top, Davison netted a free throw, then Wolfe let the lightning erupt from his fingertips.

Scoring Coupeville’s final 10 points of the quarter, which set off his boisterous fan section comprised of autograph-seeking middle school hoops stars, Wolfe staked CHS to a lead it would never lose.

Putting the exclamation point on things in the fourth, Coupeville pulled off another 9-0 run, with all the buckets fueled by ferocious defensive stops.

Jered Brown, harassing the Port Townsend ballhandler every step of the way, bumped him, poked the ball loose, then yanked the orb back off the floor and shot down court for a game-icing layup.

Not to be outdone, Toomey-Stout corralled a madly-skipping loose ball, twirled, and drained a three-ball a moment later, driving the final stake through Port Townsend’s collective heart.

On the sideline, Sherman nodded, a hoops guru happy to see his plans play out as drawn up.

“Just a really, really strong team win, which should give us the momentum we need for those final league games,” he said.

All nine Wolves who hit the floor scored Saturday, with Murdy’s 22 a career-best for him at the varsity level.

Along with Wolfe (21) and Grove (14), CHS got points out of Davison (6), Knoblich (5), Toomey-Stout (3), Brown (3), Wells (3), and Jacobi Pilgrim (2).

The 79 points are a season-high for the Wolves, topping the 77 they notched against Orcas Island, and, with their performances, Wolfe and Grove continue to assault the CHS boys hoops career scoring chart.

With 366 points and counting, Wolfe jumped from a tie for #71 to sole possession of #67 on a list which encompasses 103 seasons, while Grove, with 341 points, rises from #81 to #74.

Among the former greats the duo passed Saturday were Glenn Losey, Ethan Spark, Aaron Trumbull, and Robin Larson.

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Logan Martin was one of five Wolves to score in double figures Saturday, as the Coupeville JV scored a season-high 82 points in a win over Port Townsend. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

All about that balance, baby.

The Coupeville High School boys JV basketball team is loaded with gunners, and Chris Smith’s squad can kill you in a billion different ways.

That was shown one more time Saturday night, as five different Wolves hit double-digits in scoring as their team set a season scoring high while paddling visiting Port Townsend 82-63.

With the non-conference victory, the young guns improve to 9-5 on the season, guaranteeing they will finish with a winning record.

The Wolf JV has three games left on the schedule, with home games against South Whidbey (Jan. 28) and Granite Falls (Jan. 31), then a road trip to Sultan (Feb. 4).

Coupeville’s second squad beat all three of those schools the first time they played this season.

Saturday’s matchup with Port Townsend was a makeup of a game postponed by bad weather, and the Wolves were primed.

Barely a minute into the game, Daniel Olson crashed to the hoop, sucked in a dart of an inbounds pass and whipped home a layup, putting CHS up 4-2.

You could have called the game at that exact moment, as the visiting RedHawks would never gain the lead.

Of course, if they did, we would have missed out on another 31 minutes of highlight reel-worthy plays from the high-flying Wolves.

The passes zipped on this night, the defense was harsh and unyielding, often leading to breakaway buckets, and every guy in a Wolf uniform had a bead on the basket.

Five different Coupeville players scored in the first quarter, with Grady Rickner leading the way with a quick seven points courtesy a three-ball from the top of the arc, and a couple of long runs which led to note-perfect layups.

Both of those latter plays were set up by pinpoint ball movement, with Olson and Logan Martin firing long outlet passes which soared over scrambling defenders, then dropped on to Rickner’s waiting fingers.

When he wasn’t kicking the ball up court, Martin was banging it home as well, dropping a three-ball of his own right after arcing in a sweet little jumper in the paint.

The prettiest play of the quarter came at the very end, however.

With the clock racing to 0:00 and Smith exhorting his players to pick up the pace and get their rears up the floor, Cody Roberts came ambling by, dribbling into position.

Juking his defender off his feet, the lanky Wolf snapped to a stop and let a rainbow fly free, dropping an NBA-worthy three-ball through the bottom of the net as his coach did a double fist pump and the buzzer sounded.

If Roberts shot was a dagger, there were plenty more where that came from, as the Wolves blew open the game in the second quarter.

Sage Downes, who would finish as the second-highest scorer in the game, didn’t notch his first bucket until he converted a layup off of a steal to stretch the lead to 30-18.

With that play reigniting his scoring mojo, the middle of Angie Downes three sons then started dropping buckets like mad, slashing to the hoop time and again on his way to nine points in the quarter.

Coupeville went to the halftime locker room up 42-23, but not before Olson set up a Rickner layup with a laser-guided pass which tore the fabric of time as it also sliced ‘n diced two hapless defenders who watched it fly by their heads.

The biggest roar from the crowd came on a play by Miles Davidson, however, as he came rumbling down the right side of the floor, went airborne, and scooped up an underhanded shot, all while being whacked upside the head and body.

The ball kissed the glass and plopped through, then Davidson banked in a free throw to cap the game’s most hard-earned three-point play.

Port Townsend kept coming in the second half, but other than a brief fourth-quarter run fueled by three consecutive three-balls, could offer little resistance.

Everything was working for Coupeville, from T.J. Rickner playing like a savage down in the paint, to urban legend Chris Ruck exploding off the bench to score the game’s final bucket.

By the time all the scorebook totals had been added up, the Wolf offensive attack was remarkably well-balanced.

Grady Rickner, finishing with 18 points, narrowly edged out Downes, who slapped home 17, while Olson (12), Martin (11), and Roberts (10) all had hot hands of their own.

T.J. Rickner (7), Davidson (5), and Ruck (2) also scored for Coupeville, while Alex Jimenez was a beast on the defensive end of the floor.

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Josh Upchurch and the Coupeville C-Team split a doubleheader Saturday. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Chris Cernick had himself a day.

Drafted to help fill out the roster for a depleted Coupeville High School boys C-Team basketball squad, the Wolf big man responded in a big way.

Throwing down 35 points across two games, Cernick helped the Wolves KO host Granite Falls, and come within a play or two of toppling Sultan as well.

With the rare doubleheader split, Coupeville, which only had seven players to call on Saturday, improves to 2-8 on the season.

“We are growing,” said CHS coach Patrick Upchurch of his very-young squad. “Off-season will be big for some of these guys. It is only a matter of time.”

How the day played out:



Coupeville started strong and finished strong, but a little bit of a letdown in the middle cost it in a narrow 43-37 loss.

The Wolves jumped out to a 13-10 lead after one quarter, with five players tossing in a bucket.

Cernick led the way, pumping in five of his team-high 14, but CHS couldn’t hold on to the early advantage.

Sultan used 12-6 and 12-5 runs in the next two frames to turn the tide of the game, before Coupeville closed with a 13-9 surge in the fourth quarter.

Josh Upchurch and Dominic Coffman each banked in six points in support of Cernick, while Ty Hamilton popped for five.

Brayden Coatney (4) and Coen Killian (2) also scored, while Alex Wasik was aces on defense.


Granite Falls:

Cernick and Coffman combined to toss in 35 points as the Wolf C-Team set a season scoring mark in a 52-44 win over the day’s host.

Coupeville actually trailed for half of the game, staying close but finding itself down 12-8 after one quarter and 20-18 at the half.

Things changed after the break, however, as the Wolves more than doubled their output in the third quarter, using a 19-12 run fueled by six points apiece from Coffman and Cernick to claim the lead.

From there, CHS closed out the win by letting their big guy in the middle go to town.

Cernick wrapped up a career-best 21-point performance by throwing down nine points in the fourth, while Wasik, Coffman, and Hamilton added a bucket apiece.

Coffman finished with 14 in the game, while Coatney (8), Wasik (5), and Hamilton (4) rounded out the torrid offensive explosion.

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Sean Toomey-Stout slashes to the hoop. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Toss out the first quarter and it was a thriller.

After a cold start Friday in Bothell, the Coupeville High School varsity boys basketball team played strongly across the game’s final 24 minutes.

Unfortunately, the Wolves could never crawl their way back from a 21-point deficit at the first break, and fell 69-45 to host Cedar Park Christian.

The loss drops Coupeville to 1-5 in North Sound Conference action, 4-10 overall.

CHS will get a quick chance to bounce back, as it caps a busy week with a home non-conference tilt with Port Townsend (3-10) Saturday.

Tip-off is 4:30 for JV, 6:00 for varsity.

Friday’s game was a marked improvement for the Wolves, who lost 87-44 to the same Cedar Park squad four days ago.

It didn’t start out that way, as Coupeville fell behind 26-5 at the first break, but things got much better from there on out.

The Wolves outscored the hot-shooting Eagles 15-11 in the second quarter, with Hawthorne Wolfe leading the way with five points in the frame.

The sophomore sniper got plenty of help in the quarter, as seniors Sean Toomey-Stout and Koa Davison added four points apiece.

While the Wolves couldn’t get the lead down much more, they did hang tough with CPC, being outscored just 43-40 across the final three quarters.

Wolfe and fellow sophomore Xavier Murdy each pumped in 10 points to spark the offense, while Toomey-Stout banked home nine.

Davison and Mason Grove added six apiece, with Ulrik Wells and Jacobi Pilgrim both netting a bucket.

It was the first appearance for Wells in several games, as the Wolf big man has been recuperating from illness.

Gavin Knoblich, Jean Lund-Olsen, and Jered Brown also saw floor time for Brad Sherman’s squad.

Coupeville’s top two scorers on the season, Wolfe and Grove, continue to work their way up the Matterhorn that is the CHS boys basketball career scoring chart.

Both gunners passed four more former Wolves with their scoring efforts Friday, as Wolfe, who has 345 points, rose from #76 all-time to a tie with Timm Orsborn for #71.

He slid by Mike Vaughan (337), Kevin Faris (339), Byron Fellstrom (340), and Robin Larson (342).

Grove, who sits with 327 points, is hot on Wolfe’s trail, and jumps from #85 to #81, passing David Ford (323), Harold Buckner (323), Ian Smith (324), and Utz Conard (326) on a chart which covers 103 seasons.


JV falls:

“They wanted revenge and got it.”

It was a rough night for the Wolf JV boys, who fell 66-38 to a CPC squad they had beaten earlier in the week.

The loss drops Coupeville’s young guns to 4-2 in North Sound Conference action, 8-5 overall.

Logan Martin led the way for the Wolves, banging home a team-high 11 points, while Daniel Olson chipped in with nine.

Alex Jimenez (7), Grady Rickner (4), Cody Roberts (3), Miles Davidson (2), and TJ Rickner (2) also scored for Chris Smith’s squad.


C-Team cancels:

Coupeville was originally set to play a third game, but had to opt out due to a lack of players.

Patrick Upchurch’s team returns to action Saturday with a road doubleheader in Granite Falls, with games against the host Tigers and Sultan.

The Wolf roster will be supplemented with several players plucked from the JV squad.

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Chris Ruck was one of eight JV players to score Tuesday night against always-tough King’s. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

Mason Grove hit four treys as part of a team-high 14 points in the varsity game.

And we shall never see you again.

With Coupeville High School finally being granted a chance to return to 2B status starting next school year, the chances the Wolves will play private school power King’s in coming seasons is extremely limited.

Tuesday night the CHS boys basketball teams made the trip to Shoreline for their farewell tour, absorbing three more losses to one of the state’s premier hoops programs.

Instead of rehashing it all across three articles, we’re going to compress it into one, and then move on, with the Knights in our rearview mirrors.

At least in this sport, since the Coupeville girls basketball teams make their final trip to Shoreline Jan. 28, and then there’s spring sports.

But soon, very soon.

So, about tonight…



King’s is playing for nothing less than a state title this season.

Featuring a power-packed team that can kill you inside or outside, the Knights convinced most of the North Sound Conference teams to only play them once, and not twice.

With extra spots open on the schedule, the private school juggernauts added 2A and 3A schools to the mix, and went to Arizona for a big-time holiday tourney.

So, while King’s might be just 9-8 on the season (5-0 in league play), it’s a very-deceptive win-loss record.

Tuesday night went about as expected, as six-foot-seven sophomore sensation Tyler Linhardt pumped in 27 points across the first three quarters and King’s rolled to an 81-29 win.

The loss drops Coupeville to 1-4 in league action, 4-9 overall, though Wolf coach Brad Sherman emerged from the game with a positive mindset.

“We fought hard against a very, very tough team,” he said. “Proud of the effort, attitude, and fight in our guys.

“Ready to get back to work tomorrow. Still a lot of season left!”

Coupeville, which is still very much in the fight for either the 4th or 5th playoff seed from the NSC, has five regular-season games left, starting with a trip Friday to Bothell to play Cedar Park Christian.

Tuesday night the Wolves fell behind 20-6 after one quarter, then got roughed up 27-0 in the second frame.

The second half was much better, as CHS stayed competitive through the game’s final 16 minutes.

Mason Grove paced Coupeville with 14 points, all after the break, including hitting four three-balls.

His support crew included Hawthorne Wolfe (7), Koa Davison (2), Sean Toomey-Stout (2), Jacobi Pilgrim (2), and Gavin Knoblich (2), while Jered Brown, Jean Lund-Olsen, and Xavier Murdy all saw floor time.

Not to be lost in the defeat were personal milestones for three Wolf players.

Pilgrim’s bucket gives him exactly 100 points for his prep career, making him the 186th CHS boy to reach triple digits in 103 seasons of hoops action.

While the senior big man was notching that honor, backcourt gunners Grove and Wolfe continued their assault on the career scoring chart.

Grove, a senior, now sits with 321 points, and he moved from #90 to #85 all-time Tuesday, passing five former Coupeville players, ranging from old school star Bob Rea to recent alumni Gabe Wynn and Nick Streubel.

Meanwhile, Wolfe, just a sophomore, now has 335 points, and he broke out of a three-way tie with Brad Brown and Charlie Tessaro at #78, then passed Aaron Trumbull (330) and Jim Yake (331) to land at #76 on the career chart.



A four-game winning streak came to a stop for Coupeville, as Chris Smith’s squad fell 62-30.

Even with the loss, the Wolves are still sitting strong at 4-1 in league, 8-4 overall.

King’s jumped out to an 18-7 lead, then steadily added to the margin, until CHS fought the Knights to an 8-8 standstill in the fourth quarter.

Logan Martin and Sage Downes were twins on the night, both scoring a team-high eight points, while also both netting a pair of three-balls.

Also scoring for Coupeville were TJ Rickner (4), Grady Rickner (3), Chris Ruck (2), Alex Murdy (2), Chris Cernick (2), and Daniel Olson (1).

Alex Jimenez, Miles Davidson, Andrew Aparicio, and Cody Roberts rounded out the roster, all seeing floor time for the Wolves.



Improvement was the key word.

Despite playing without starters Ty Hamilton and Ben Smith, the young Wolves increased their scoring total seven times from last season.

Back then, CHS fell 60-3, while Tuesday night, it hung tough in a 63-21 loss.

The defeat drops Coupeville to 0-4 in league play, 1-7 overall.

Freshman Dominic Coffman spurred the much-improved offensive attack, rattling home a team-high nine points, while Brayden Coatney added six.

Coen Killian and Alex Wasik both dropped three-balls to round out the scoring, with Coffman also hitting on a shot from behind the arc.

Josh Upchurch, Caleb Sonntag, and Nick Armstrong also saw floor time for Patrick Upchurch’s squad.

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