Posts Tagged ‘Mason Grove’

Jenna Dickson leads off our collection of spring sports portraits. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

Zach Ginnings

Alex Jimenez

James Vidoni

Mason Grove

Dawson Houston

Ben Smith

Ivy Leedy

Time for a little spring cleaning.

As the season winds down, I’m going through head shots snapped by John Fisken and trying to make sure 99.3% of them get used.

The eight above, covering softball, baseball and boys soccer, are ones that, for whatever reason, had yet to see the light of day.

Before you ask, there are no tennis pics because it’s a smaller team and I already used all their head shots.

And track? It’s a bigger team and no one snapped head shots, so I can’t use something I never had.

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   Johnny Carlson was a force at the plate and on the mound Thursday for the Coupeville JV baseball team. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

The sun was back, and it brought the offense with it.

A day after the Coupeville High School varsity baseball team was rained out, the Wolf JV had beautiful weather for its game Thursday, a day when the only thing raining down was runs.

How many runs you ask? A heck of a lot of runs.

31 to be exact, as visiting Sequim built a 12-run lead, then held off a furious Coupeville comeback and escaped with an 18-13 win.

The loss drops the Wolf JV to 0-2 on the season.

It was the kind of day when 95% of the players scored at least one run apiece.

OK, it’s probably simpler to just say Sequim third-baseman Julian Hernandez was the only player, out of 20 to see the field, who didn’t touch home.

He was 90 feet away in the first inning, but the Wolves denied him, and then every other player in uniform went and did what he couldn’t.

All 10 Wolves scored, with Jered Brown, Mason Grove and Drake Borden crossing the plate twice each and CHS racking up 15 hits on the afternoon.

Coupeville claimed its only lead of the game at 4-2 after piling up five of those base-knocks in the bottom of the first.

Brown, Grove, Jake Pease, Shane Losey and Johnny Carlson all put good metal to ball, as the Wolves looked like they might roll away with things.

Sequim managed to put a damper on things though, escaped the inning, then held CHS scoreless until the fourth as it built a 9-4 lead.

The Wolves chipped away for two runs in the fourth to pull back within three runs, then the fifth inning went nuclear on both sides of the ball.

Sequim erupted for nine runs in the top half of the inning, blowing the game open to an 18-6 tune, then promptly almost gave it all back.

Putting together five hits, including two from freshman Daniel Olson, Coupeville sent 12 batters to the plate and scored seven of them in the bottom of the fifth.

And then, as suddenly as the offense came, it fled again, with the two teams both failing to score a run across the final two innings.

Carlson, who came on in relief in the fifth, closed out the game on the mound, striking out two as he shut Sequim down in the sixth and seventh.

Coupeville’s hit parade was led by Brown and Grove, who each collected four hits, while Jacob Zettle, Gavin Straub and James Vidoni joined their teammates by scoring.

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   Chris Smith’s Wolf boys JV basketball squad offered plenty of offensive fireworks Thursday, but couldn’t quite hold on for the win. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

A beautiful, thrilling gut punch.

Thursday night’s JV boys basketball rumble between Coupeville and visiting Klahowya hit all the emotions on the spectrum, getting early-arriving fans all worked up.

The only downside to an often-electrifying game was the final score, as the Wolves couldn’t hold on to a 12-point fourth quarter lead and fell 56-54 in overtime.

The loss drops the CHS young guns to 3-5 in Olympic League play, 4-14 overall.

For much of the game Thursday, Coupeville played like a fifth win would be a lock.

After a ho-hum first quarter, which ended in a 5-5 tie, but featured a teeth-rattling block by Ulrik Wells and a gorgeous little running hook shot from Sage Downes, things began to heat up.

Mason Grove dropped a three-ball right in a defender’s face to open the second, then Koa Davison decided it was time to rule the world, or at least the court.

The Wolf sophomore knocked down a trey off of a feed from Wells, hit a pair of free throws without making the net ripple in the slightest, then sank a second three-ball while on the move.

That shot sizzled through the net so fast, all three people working the scorekeeper’s table missed it, and had to retroactively credit Davison after a halftime visit from the Points Police.

Up 21-18 at the break, Coupeville rained down three-balls in the third and fourth (Grove and Downes each hit a pair, while Daniel Olson dropped in a really long one) and seized control of the game.

The Wolves stretched their lead out to 13 at one point, and seemed totally in control after David Prescott banked home a rebound to stake CHS to a 46-34 lead with four minutes to play.

The lead wasn’t big enough, however, as Klahowya clamped down on defense, used a press to its advantage, then got lucky on a couple of iffy shots.

Wells threw down a three-point play the hard way, corralling a long outlet pass and turning it into a bucket-and-free-throw, but the Eagles kept coming and the game slipped away from Coupeville.

Missed free throws down the stretch were a killer for both teams, but ultimately stung the Wolves worse and the two squads staggered into extra basketball knotted at 51-51.

The four-minute OT period was firmly split into two story-lines, and, unfortunately for CHS, they didn’t play out evenly.

Klahowya built up a five-point lead, while the Wolves failed to score until the final 45 seconds.

Gavin Knoblich lost his man on a drive to the hoop for a bucket, then added a free throw to pull Coupeville within 56-54, but that was it for any comeback hopes.

The Eagles badly missed two final free throws, but with no time outs and a running clock, Downes had to launch a potential game-winner from well behind the half-court line and his prayer wasn’t answered.

Seven different Wolves scored, with Grove making the nets kick for 13, which gives him 325 in 18 JV games.

Downes went off for 12, Davison collected nine and Knoblich (7), Wells (6), Olson (5) and Prescott (2) also scored.

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   Coupeville players like Jake Pease put up strong effort Tuesday but couldn’t topple Sequim in a pair of games. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

It’s hard to beat a team that doesn’t beat itself.

In a virtual recreation of a game the two schools played early in the season, 2A Sequim played precision basketball Tuesday, dumping visiting Coupeville 65-41.

The non-conference loss drops the Wolf boys to 5-13 with two games to play.

CHS hosts Klahowya Thursday on Senior Night, then heads to Chimacum to face a win-less Cowboys squad in the season finale for both teams.

Sparring a Sequim squad which was virtually flawless Tuesday in all aspects of the game, with a special emphasis on note-perfect ball movement and crisp passes, the Wolves held their own for a solid two, maybe three, minutes.

A pair of free throws from Hunter Smith, coming on the heels of an electric three-ball from Cameron Toomey-Stout, knotted the game at 5-5 and anything was possible.

And then it wasn’t.

Using a 16-0 run which carried into the early moments of the second quarter, Sequim put the game out of reach and hit cruise control from there.

Joey Lippo, who took two hard falls in the game after taking shots to the ankle and face, stopped the assault with a bank shot off a nice dish from Hunter Downes, but it did little to slow Sequim.

After Smith followed Lippo’s bucket with a steal and breakaway layup, Coupeville couldn’t put together back-to-back buckets again until the final moments of the game.

With just a basket here, a basket there, always followed immediately by a Sequim score or two, the Wolves were unable to carve the lead down, instead watching it get stretched out to 27 at its peak.

Down 60-33, CHS reached down deep and made a gritty stand over the final 90 seconds, with Downes and Toomey-Stout each rattling home three-balls, packaged around another steal and breakaway bucket from Smith.

The game finished with the same margin of victory as when the teams met in early Dec. — 24 points. Back then, Sequim rolled to a 59-35 win on Whidbey.

Smith paced Coupeville with 19 points, running his career total to 795.

With two games to go, he needs 17 to pass Corey Cross (811) and claim 12th place on the Wolf boys career scoring chart.

Toomey-Stout, known for his intensity on defense, non-stop hustle and award-winning hair, dropped in a season-best 11 points, capped by a trio of treys from behind the arc.

Lippo, who was limping but unbowed, tossed in four, a figure matched by Ethan Spark, while Downes capped the scoring with his three-ball.

While he didn’t score, Wolf big man Kyle Rockwell gave a feisty pack of road fans a thrill when he twice lowered the boom on Sequim players, making sure they would properly remember being fouled.

JV toppled:

A close game became something else after halftime.

Trailing by nine at the break, Coupeville’s shooting touch failed after the break, allowing Sequim to use a scorching 40-9 surge to run away with a 65-23 win.

The non-conference loss drops the Wolf young guns to 4-13.

CHS put up six in the first quarter, including a three-ball from Sage Downes, then added eight in the second, but the second half was a whole ‘nother game.

Sequim toasted the net during a 29-9 third quarter, then closed the game with an 11-0 shutout in the fourth.

Mason Grove paced Coupeville with 11, including three bombs from behind the arc, while Ulrik Wells pounded down low for four points.

Sage Downes (3), James Vidoni (2), Koa Davison (2) and David Prescott (1) also scored.

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   Wolf sophomore Mason Grove has torched the nets at both the JV and varsity levels this season. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

   Allen Black, basketball gunner extraordinaire turned daddy, and the legend Grove is chasing.

   CHS basketball announcer Moose Moran bags the first of many interviews with Grove. (Renae Mulholland photo)

Shooters gotta shoot.

It’s hardwired in their DNA, the need to let the ball fly and the ability to make sure said ball hits nothing but net on the way down.

As Mason Grove tears up the court this season, it brings back memories of Allen Black, another Wolf gunner with no conscious and an electric shooting touch.

Black holds the unofficial CHS basketball scoring record for JV players, torching the nets for 347 points during his junior season in 2002-2003.

A year later, he was a varsity star, an All-Conference pick who led Coupeville in scoring with 305 points, including 39 against Concrete.

Grove, who is operating as a swing player during his sophomore season, is hot on Black’s trail, having dropped in 294 points through the first 15 JV games of the season.

With four games left on the schedule, Grove, who is averaging 19.6 a night, needs 54 points to top Black.

Mason should be able to beat it, he’s pretty good,” said the always low-key Black, who remains open to the idea of the duo joining a who’s-who of past and present Wolf shooters in a three-ball competition.

“Three-point contest like an All-Star game, with a bunch of people, would be cool,” Mr. Easy Rider said with a small grin — the smile of a shark circling his prey.

For his part, Grove is heating up the rims at two levels this season, using brief bursts of varsity playing time to rattle home 42 points at that level.

That puts him in a fourth-place tie with Hunter Downes among varsity players.

Whether he gets enough floor time at the JV level in the final four games to catch Black or not, Grove’s explosive season has caught the eyes of coaches and fans alike.  

First-year Coupeville head coach Brad Sherman has first-hand knowledge of both Grove and Black, helping coach the former and having played with the latter.

“I just remember that Allen was seriously quick and hard to keep up with on the court,” Sherman said. “Mason really continues to impress from behind the arc this season.

“Similar styles of play, both hard workers on the court, and both with the ability to score a bunch in a really short span.”

That is proven by a quick look at their stats.

Black rained down 19 points in a single JV quarter against Concrete, the team he would return to haunt as a varsity star, while Grove has twice thrown down 17 in a quarter this season, shredding Port Townsend and Chimacum.

Grove has scored in every JV game this season, something Black also did in his day.

For the moment, Black has the edge in 20-point games (9-6), and double-digit scoring (17-13), but Grove returns the favor in 30-point games (3-1).

Having seen both of the gunners in their prime, Sherman, no slouch himself from the outside during a career where he finished #8 on the CHS boys career scoring chart, has a solid appreciation for what Black and Grove bring to the floor.

“As shooters — very quick releases are hard to defend, and (both) never afraid to shoot when they get a good look,” Sherman said. “It doesn’t surprise me at all that these are the two at the top of this list.”

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