Posts Tagged ‘Ema Smith’

   With a win Thursday, Chelsea Prescott and her Wolf teammates kept alive their hopes of earning a share of the Olympic League title. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

It has been a season-long battle.

A rebuilding Coupeville High School girls basketball squad, especially after it lost its top scorer to a season-ending injury, has had issues putting the ball in the bucket.

On many nights, the Wolf defense has been a true bright spot, but the offense has largely been a work in progress.

Until the fourth quarter Thursday afternoon.

Suddenly, everything clicked and Coupeville ripped off a 20-1 tear over the game’s final eight minutes, running host Klahowya off the floor to a 36-21 tune.

“We found lightning in a bottle!,” exclaimed Coupeville’s very-happy coach, David King.

The win lifts the Wolves to 5-3 in Olympic League play, 7-13 overall and keeps alive their hopes of garnering a share of the conference title.

Coupeville, which has hung three consecutive league title placards on the school’s Wall of Fame, still needs everything to break its way Saturday.

The Wolves face Chimacum (4-4), while Port Townsend (6-2) plays Klahowya (1-7).

Wins by Coupeville and Klahowya would leave CHS and PTHS with identical 6-3 marks.

While the schools would share the title, Port Townsend has clinched the league’s #1 playoff seed, since it owns a tiebreaker, having taken two of three from Coupeville this season.

Saturday’s game, which is Senior Night for Kyla Briscoe, Allison Wenzel and Mikayla Elfrank, will determine if the Wolves enter the postseason as a #2 or #3 seed.

Win and Coupeville hosts a loser-out playoff game Feb. 10, one win away from the double elimination portion of districts.

Fall to Chimacum Saturday, a team it has split two games with, and CHS would be the #3 seed and open the playoffs Feb. 8 at home.

Under that scenario, they would have to survive two loser-out games to advance.

Playing their final regular season road game Thursday, the Wolves looked like they were following a familiar, and distressing, pattern.

Shot went up, but shots refused to stay in the cylinder, and CHS trailed 20-16 headed to the fourth.

A strong defensive effort kept Klahowya from pulling too far away, but buckets, any kind of buckets, was what King desired.

And the Wolves answered.

“After struggling through the first three quarters, we caught fire in all facets of the game,” he said. “Everything clicked.”

While they trailed, the Wolves were playing with a great deal of confidence, something King praised in the huddle.

“I could see a momentum shift and that we needed to keep up the effort,” he said. “It all started with our press and defensive effort.

“We got a couple of steals and easy buckets to start the fourth, then caused a couple of more turnovers,” King added. “That got our half-court defense ramped up and helped us settle down on offense.

“The jumpers we were missing in the first half all of a sudden looked smooth and put up with confidence. They started falling in bunches.”

A trio of Wolves provided the late-game offensive heroics, with Ema Smith knocking down eight in the quarter, Kyla Briscoe adding seven and Lindsey Roberts capping things with five.

Briscoe and Roberts both netted huge three-balls, while Smith (4-4) and Briscoe (2-2) combined to ice the game with flawless free-throw shooting.

All of the fourth-quarter free throws were of the 1-and-1 variety, as well, putting an added degree of danger for the Wolves, who responded like seasoned pros.

The comeback had begun in the third quarter, when King used his bench players to light a spark.

“We looked to be heading into a tailspin, so we went to our bench quickly and often trying to find a flicker of light,” he said. “Chelsea (Prescott), Allison, Avalon (Renninger) and Hannah (Davidson) did just that with their effort and defense.

Scout Smith rattled home a big bucket to turn the tide, then Roberts dropped in a trey to end the third quarter.

Riding the momentum, the Wolves dominated in the fourth by “controlling the boards and being the aggressor.”

Roberts went coast-to-coast on one play, slapping home a layup after she snagged a defensive rebound, then charged right at the heart of the Klahowya defense.

“I’ve been waiting for her to make a play like that!,” said a proud coach.

Ema Smith paced Coupeville with a game-high 13, while Roberts (10), Briscoe (9) and Scout Smith (4) also scratched their names in the book.

“We only had four players score, but each player contributed in this victory,” King said. “Defense doesn’t always show up in the stats, but all nine players contributed at some point to our success in the third and fourth quarters.”

Roberts snagged seven boards, as all nine Wolves nabbed at least one rebound. Briscoe (four assists and five steals) and Ema Smith (six steals and six rebounds) also filled up the stat sheet.

Sarah Wright capped the game with a play which perfectly captured Coupeville’s grit and will to win.

With the game all but done, an Eagle tried to take the ball to the hoop hard for a last-second layup, only to have Wright slide into place, plant herself and absorb the full brunt of the charge, causing an offensive foul call as the buzzer rang.

JV sits out (again):

The Wolf young guns failed to play for the second-straight game thanks to extenuating circumstances.

Issues with refs (or the lack of them) cost Coupeville’s #2 squad a chance to play Tuesday at Sequim.

Thursday, it was the cancellation of ferry runs, which ensured CHS had to ankle for the exits at Silverdale early.

The young Wolves sit at 7-10 heading into Saturday’s season finale.

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   Lindsey Roberts had nine points and 13 rebounds Friday as Coupeville rallied to beat Chimacum and move into first place in the Olympic League. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Give Kyla Briscoe the keys to the city.

Hitting a game-busting three-ball with just five ticks to play Friday, the Coupeville senior sent the Wolf girls basketball squad to an epic road win and a share of first-place in the Olympic League.

When Briscoe’s shot nestled through the net, it drove a stake through the hearts of Chimacum fans everywhere, lifting CHS to a 33-30 victory and capping a remarkable second-half comeback.

Now 4-2 in league play, 6-11 overall, the Wolves have won four of their last six and are tied with Port Townsend (4-2), who they face next, atop the conference.

That game arrives Jan. 26, and will be on Coupeville’s home court. The Wolves and RedHawks have split their previous two meetings this season, both winning at home.

With the loss, Chimacum (3-3) slips a game behind, while Klahowya (1-5) brings up the rear.

Friday’s fracas ended wildly, as the Wolves used up most of their nine lives to escape with the victory.

Having rallied from seven points down at the half, Coupeville was clinging to a two-point lead at 30-28 when Chimacum knotted things back up on a bucket with 29.5 seconds to play.

Facing a trap from the rough-and-tumble Cowboys, the Wolves beat it, cleared half court, but then got re-trapped and forced into a jump ball.

With the possession arrow pointing towards the visiting team, Coupeville retained possession, and, after a timeout and words of wisdom from coach David King, ran the clock down, looking for a final shot.

Then the Wolves almost threw everything away.

Enter Lindsey Roberts, who used her long reach to corral an errant pass and save the day.

Alertly spotting Briscoe cutting to the wing, she delivered the ball onto her teammate’s fingertips, then waited for the biggest shot of the year to go exactly where every Wolf wanted it to go.

With Wolf sophomore Scout Smith perfectly blocking out a defender to give her room to work, Briscoe caught the pass and promptly drilled it right through the bottom of the net.

Coupeville had to wait several agonizing seconds to fully celebrate, though, as Chimacum’s final pass sailed out of bounds as time expired.

The win signaled the Wolves ability to adapt, as they changed up their game plan after falling to the Cowboys the first time the teams met this season.

“Our first game against Chimacum, they disrupted us and helped cause 43 turnovers,” King said. “We knew we needed to improve this area to look to get a win.

“They make up for team height with quickness and an aggressive press and defense,” he added. “That first game it seemed like they were a team playing with smoke and mirrors. Sometimes it felt like they had seven or eight players on the court at once. So we worked to correct some things for tonight.”

Breaking Chimacum’s press, the Wolves scrapped and led for chunks of the first half, before a few errors began to add up and hurt them.

Trailing 18-11 at halftime, Coupeville righted itself during the break.

“After halftime we wanted to get back to what made us successful to start the game and just chip away at the lead,” King said. “We wanted to get back to Coupeville basketball.”

The key was coming hard on defense, as the Wolves, using a 2-3 zone, shut Chimacum down.

A 10-5 surge in the third cut the deficit back to just a bucket, then the Wolves tied things up at 25-25 midway through the fourth quarter on a jumper from freshman Chelsea Prescott.

Free throws from Sarah Wright and Briscoe, packaged around a no-nerves jumper from Scout Smith, put CHS in front by three before the Cowboys retied things to set up the frantic final 30 seconds.

Coupeville, which is playing without top scorer Mikayla Elfrank, who is rehabbing a shredded ankle, has pulled together as a team, with everyone chipping in, whether it’s with scoring or intangibles.

“All eight players brought passion and didn’t want to go home without getting a win,” said a proud King.

Wright paced the Wolves with a career-high 13 points, while also snagging seven boards and collecting two steals and two assists.

Roberts added nine points and a game-high 13 rebounds, while Briscoe knocked down six points, Scout Smith banked in three and Prescott added a bucket.

The other three Wolves were equally invaluable, with Ema Smith (nine rebounds, two assists and two blocks on a bum ankle), Allison Wenzel (three rebounds) and Hannah Davidson drawing praise from their coach.

After three straight seasons of finishing 9-0 in league play, this year’s version of the Wolves has faced numerous obstacles, but are still in the driver’s seat for a fourth-straight title.

The grit and fight needed to get to where they are at continues to impress King.

“This year, this league is a tough battle each game,” he said. “Tonight was our night and the big shot by Kyla sealed it. And a great shot it was!

“But it’s also making three more free throws,” King added. “It’s never quitting and believing if we play Coupeville basketball, we give ourselves a chance to win.”

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   Kyla Briscoe racked up nine points, four steals and three assists Wednesday, sparking Coupeville to a huge win. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

It was the perfect Christmas present.

Heading into a nine-day break between games, the Coupeville High School girls basketball squad put a win under the tree Wednesday night.

Shredding a visiting Concrete team that offered little match for the Wolves aggressiveness, especially on defense, CHS romped to a 47-7 win.

And no, that’s not a misprint.

Three different Wolves — Ema Smith, Kyla Briscoe and Lindsey Roberts — outscored the Lions by themselves, as Coupeville snagged a much-needed non-conference victory.

In a season of transition, with a roster which has been further shuffled as the season has progressed, the Wolves have been better than their 2-7 record might indicate.

Four of their losses have been by six or less points, and there is little question talent runs deep on this squad.

The key, as they deal with the loss of four starters from last season’s league title-winning team, has been to get all the parts working together. To find that perfect rhythm.

And while no one will call Wednesday’s romp perfect, it was still a big step forward.

Nine of 10 Wolves scored, including sophomore Hannah Davidson, who was making her varsity (and season) debut after a family move this week brought her back from a year-long exile in California.

Reunited with her former teammates, she gave Coupeville an immediate presence in the paint and on the boards, while dishing the ball with panache on back-to-back assists.

The first came on a picture-perfect feed to Scout Smith, a fellow Class of 2020 star, who snagged Davidson’s in-bounds pass and drained a long jumper in one smooth motion.

The very next play it was Davidson, showing a surprising nimbleness for an inside banger, picking off a pass in the open court, whirling and feeding Kyla Briscoe, who slapped home the running layup.

Briscoe, one of three seniors on this year’s squad, has begun to step up and take a featured role in the Wolf offensive attack.

Wednesday night, she was on fire in the second quarter, dropping in seven points, with a pair of layups topped with a sweet three-ball from the top.

Using a withering defensive onslaught, including a frequent trap, the Wolves essentially kept Concrete from getting a decent shot off for 98.7% of the game.

Coupeville rolled to an 11-0 lead at the end of the first quarter, didn’t give up a point until nearly three minutes into the second, and surrendered exactly one field goal all night.

Concrete’s only basket came 30 seconds into the fourth quarter, at a time when the Wolves were safely ahead 37-3.

Other than that, it was four free throws, a handful of misses and a lot of broken-up passes and turnovers for the Lion offense.

CHS, by contrast, had a lot of good looks. While they didn’t always take advantage of every opportunity, they did push the flow of the game, at times playing as if they were involved in a free-flowing scrimmage.

Some of the shots were poppin’ fresh.

Freshman Chelsea Prescott, who recently moved up to varsity full-time, had a scintillating drive down the baseline for a bucket, Ema Smith knocked down a gorgeous runner off the glass and Sarah Wright abused the Lions in the paint.

Working her elbows like a pro, and flashing some vintage Detroit Pistons Bad Boys-style grumpiness while fighting for loose balls, the junior post player made sure Concrete would remember her name, and her game.

Ema Smith led the most-balanced scoring attack of the season, draining 10 points, while Briscoe netted nine and Roberts sank eight.

Wright (6), Prescott (4), Scout Smith (4), Mikayla Elfrank (3), Davidson (2) and Allison Wenzel (1) also scored, while Avalon Renninger spent her time setting up her teammates with crisp passes and defensive hustle.

Davidson led the Wolves on the boards, ripping down eight caroms in her return, while also piling up two assists, two steals and two blocks.

Briscoe pilfered four steals and handed out three assists, with Wright finagling three steals of her own.

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   The Coupeville Booster Club’s annual Crab Feed fundraiser attracted an assortment of people, including John Fisken and Ciara Smith. (Ema Smith photos)

Someone’s excited to get eatin’.

Avalon Renninger, one with the universe.

Wolf volleyball ace Lucy Sandahl checks in on her papa.

   Soccer sensation Genna Wright lays the smack down on her potato. “I am going to destroy you! Absolutely destroy you!!”

“How sweet it is!”

Morgan Pease (left) and Lindsey Roberts have a smile-off.

   Maddy Hilkey (with tongs) and Jake Pease prepare to attack Sarah Wright’s tray o’ crab.

   Having just made it back from the state volleyball tourney in Yakima, Wolves (l to r) Emma Smith, Hope Lodell and Ashley Menges showed up to help serve.

   Former Booster Club bigwig Robyn Myers enjoys the perks of eating crab with husband Rob without having to spend months planning the event.

It’s the biggest social event of the season.

Every year the Coupeville Booster Club puts on a crab feed, and everyone who is anyone shows up to support Wolf athletes and enjoy a mix of taste treats.

As the action went down Saturday night, CHS supernova Ema Smith clicked away, providing us with the pics seen above.

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   Ema Smith notched her first goal of the season Thursday in Sequim. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Don’t sleep on Ema Smith.

The Coupeville High School junior is normally a role player for the girls soccer squad, but she has a dangerous goal-scoring toe or two at her disposal, as she showed Thursday night.

Smith notched her first score of the season, beating the Sequim goaltender (with a little assist from a rival player’s head), the only Wolf to do so in a 4-1 loss.

The non-conference defeat, coming on the road against a large 2A school, snaps a two-game win streak for CHS and drops it to 2-2 on the season.

While the final score didn’t come out in favor of his squad, Wolf coach Kyle Nelson saw genuine positives in his team’s performance.

“It was a closer game than the score shows,” he said. “It is also a good game for us against a good opponent to show us the things we need to work on.

“We will use this to get better.”

Coupeville, which is tied with Klahowya for the early lead atop the 1A Olympic League, has a key game coming up on Saturday.

The Wolves (1-0 in league play) travel to Port Townsend for a 1:15 game.

That match-up with the RedHawks closes out a three-game road trip for Coupeville.

After that game, CHS won’t have to play more than one road game in a row the remainder of the regular season.

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