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Izzy Wells was one of eight Wolves to score Saturday in Seattle as Coupeville’s varsity won its fourth-straight game. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

They’re getting historical.

Sparked by a big second quarter Saturday, the Coupeville High School varsity girls basketball team clobbered The Bush School to keep its early-season hot streak alive.

With the 41-28 non-conference road victory in Seattle, the Wolves are on a four-game winning streak and sit at 5-1.

That’s the best start by a CHS girls hoops team since the 2009-2010 squad, which was led in scoring by current JV coach Megan Smith, opened 6-1.

Coupeville, which plays its first North Sound Conference game next Tuesday, Dec. 17, when it travels to Sultan, is mixing aggressive defense with opportunistic scoring.

First-year head coach Scott Fox has a 13-player roster, and it’s a mix of seasoned vets who enjoyed success under previous coach David King before he retired, and young guns looking to make their own mark.

Saturday’s game perfectly captured Coupeville’s “something new, something old” style, as senior Scout Smith, and her likely heir at point guard, freshman Maddie Georges, teamed up to batter their foes.

Smith scored in every quarter, topping the Wolves with 10 points, while Georges nailed a pair of three-balls in the decisive second quarter, en route to eight points of her own.

The duo were part of a very-balanced offense, as eight different CHS players scratched their names into the scorebook.

Coupeville, whose only loss was to 3A Oak Harbor, which is also off to its best start in years at 5-0, came out strongly on the road.

Attacking the basket with intensity, the Wolves opened up a 10-7 lead after one quarter, then dropped the hammer with a 17-7 run in the night’s second frame.

Georges lit the fuse during that surge with her treys, but Smith, Avalon Renninger, Hannah Davidson, Izzy Wells, and Kylie Van Velkinburgh also netted buckets as CHS was unstoppable.

The Bush School players stiffened their collective spines during halftime and played Coupeville to a dead heat in the second half, with the third quarter going 9-9 and the fourth finishing 5-5, but it was too late for a rally.

“Well, we did it again,” Fox said. “Scout stepped up big time and led us like a senior.

Maddie played great and Hannah controlled the middle; another team win.”

While Smith (10) and Georges (8) had the hottest shooting touch, Davidson and Chelsea Prescott were hot on their heels, dropping in six points apiece.

Wells (4), Renninger (3), Mollie Bailey (2), and Van Velkinburgh (2) rounded out the offensive attack, with Tia Wurzrainer, Carolyn Lhamon, Audrianna Shaw, and Anya Leavell garnering quality floor time.

After playing at Sultan, the Wolves play two non-conference games next week, traveling to Port Townsend Thursday and hosting Nooksack Valley Saturday.

After that, they’re off for 12 days, returning Jan. 3 to kick-off the 2020 portion of the 2019-2020 hoops season.

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With 11 points Saturday, Hawthorne Wolfe becomes the first CHS hoops player to pass 100 for the season. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Free throws killed them.

A huge disparity at the charity stripe was too much to overcome for the Coupeville High School varsity boys basketball team Saturday in Seattle.

While the Wolves drilled all four of their freebies, The Bush School went 18-24, all in the second half, and knocked off their visitors 53-40.

The non-conference loss, coming in Coupeville’s second game in less than 24 hours, drops it to 2-4 on the season.

If the lack of love on foul calls was due to home town refs (just a thought, I wasn’t there), things will hopefully get better for CHS next week, as the Wolves play three straight in Cow Town.

Coupeville hosts Chimacum Tuesday, Port Townsend Thursday, and Nooksack Valley Saturday, then heads off to winter break.

Facing off with The Bush School, the Wolves were whistled for 16 fouls, with two players picking up four apiece.

The host Blazers were only whacked by the refs eight times, with no one on their roster picking up more than two personal fouls.

Maybe the Wolves were just too handsy, or maybe the refs were missing their seeing-eye dogs.

Like I said, I wasn’t there.

But the free throws negated Coupeville’s edge from behind the three-point arc, erased a Wolf halftime lead, and provided the final margin.

The Wolves lost by 13 — the first time this season they have been beat by double digits — and made 14 less free throws than their private school foes.

In the early going, Coupeville rode the three-ball shooting skills of senior Mason Grove and held The Bush School at bay.

Grove splashed down four first-half treys, with three of them coming in the second quarter, as the Wolves turned a razor-thin 5-4 edge after one quarter into a 18-14 bulge at the half.

But while Coupeville added another four three-balls after the break, with sophomore Hawthorne Wolfe netting three, and Grove hitting his fifth, The Bush School started to take control.

The Blazers hit 3-5 at the free throw line in the third quarter, pulling ahead 34-29 headed into the final frame, then went (slowly) bonkers down the stretch, swishing 15-19 at the stripe in the fourth.

Grove paced Coupeville with 15 points, while Wolfe dropped in 11, all in the second half.

That was most of the offense, however, with Sean Toomey-Stout, Ulrik Wells, and Jacobi Pilgrim each adding four, while Jean Lund-Olsen finished with two points.

Jered Brown, Tucker Hall, and Gavin Knoblich all saw floor time for the Wolves, while inside scoring threat Koa Davison sat out after rolling his ankle in Friday’s game.

Two Coupeville players hit personal milestones in the loss.

With his 11 points, Wolfe becomes the first CHS player, boy or girl, to cross the 100-point barrier this season.

After leading the team with 158 as a freshman, he tops the squad again, this time with 103 across the first six games, which is a hair over 17 a night.

With his first of two buckets on the night, Wells hit 100 points for his career.

He’s the fifth active CHS boys player to reach that mark, following Wolfe (261), Grove (239), Toomey-Stout (168), and Brown (125), and the 184th all-time across 103 seasons.

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Logan Martin dropped in nine points Saturday, but the Coupeville JV fell to The Bush School. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Great set-up, disappointing finale.

Having rallied to tie up the game heading into the fourth quarter Saturday, the Coupeville High School JV boys basketball squad looked to be in good shape.

But the Wolves host in Seattle, The Bush School, proved to be just a little too deadly down the stretch, holding off CHS to escape with a 42-35 win.

The non-conference loss drops Coupeville’s young guns to a still-respectable 3-2 on the season.

And now, having played four of their first five on the road, the Wolves get three straight at home next week, then a long winter break.

CHS hosts Chimacum Tuesday, Port Townsend Thursday, and Nooksack Valley Saturday.

Playing in Seattle, the Wolves fell behind early, then got hot coming out of the halftime break.

Down 8-5 after the first quarter, Coupeville saw the gap widen to 19-13 after the second frame wrapped up.

Perhaps Wolf coach Chris Smith gave a rousing halftime speech, or maybe the Wolves naturally shooting ability just clicked back into place.

Either way, Coupeville was a different team in the third quarter.

With Logan Martin popping for four points to lead the way, five different Wolves scored as CHS used a 13-7 surge to knot the game up at 26-26.

That set up a frantic finale, but one The Bush School managed to control, using a mix of field goals and pressure-packed free throws.

Sage Downes led Coupeville’s offensive attack, making the nets pop for 10 points, while Martin banked in nine and Grady Rickner knocked down eight.

Alex Jimenez (5), Daniel Olson (2), and Cody Roberts (1) also scored, with Downes, Martin, and Jimenez all connecting on three-balls.

Chris Cernick, Alex Murdy, and Miles Davidson also saw floor time for the Wolves.

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Thane Peterson, playing singles for the first time, won Wednesday to help propel Coupeville tennis to its first team victory this season. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Can’t stop them when they have all their guys.

Playing with a complete varsity lineup for the first time this season, the Coupeville High School boys tennis team bounced The Bush School 3-2 Wednesday, notching its first team win of the season.

With the road victory, the Wolves improve to 1-3 in Emerald City League play, and now head home to host Overlake Friday afternoon.

Play starts at 3:30 PM.

Coupeville was down a man through its first three matches, and had to forfeit #2 singles each time out.

That changed in a big way Wednesday, as Miles Davidson, having reached the magical number of practices, made his season debut.

With the sophomore teaming up with Koby Schreiber to play #3 doubles, Thane Peterson went solo, playing singles for the first time in his prep career.

And he made quite the auspicious debut, rolling to a 7-5, 6-1 win which proved to be vitally important to the team cause.

It was a performance which made longtime CHS tennis guru Ken Stange do a little dance.

“I was very proud of Thane,” the Wolf coach said. “He was a bit nervous, but we discussed playing one point at a time, as opposed to looking at the match as a single entity.

“Breaking it down to just playing points allows a player to shed some nerves. It makes it more like practice,” Stange added. “After a close first set, I gave him a few tips. He put them into play and romped in the second set.”

Coupeville also got big wins at #1 singles (Drake Borden) and #1 doubles (James Wood/Mason Grove) to seal the deal on the conference win.

It was the second victory this season for the Wolf tandem, and the first for Borden, who has had to face a murderer’s row of sluggers at the top of the roster in the state’s toughest 1A tennis league.

Mason and James were outstanding,” Stange said. “They too played a close first set before blowing the doors off in the second.

“They hit with easy power and were able to find the proper angles.”

Borden, who worked extensively on his game in the off-season, has been highly-competitive in his matches, while facing tournament-tested pros, but Wednesday it all came together as he won a three-set thriller.

Drake muddled through the first set,” Stange said. “He was playing someone he knew he could beat, but he was tense. He took a few deep breaths, released some muscle tension, and proceeded to play a dominant second set.

“He built a commanding lead in the third set tiebreaker before coughing up a few points to make things close,” he added. “When it came down to crunch time, Drake picked up the match point, the individual win, and clinched the team win.

“All in all, it was a good day.”

 

Complete Wednesday results:

1st Singles — Drake Borden beat Quinn Chow 4-6, 6-2, 10-8

2nd Singles — Thane Peterson beat Arman Bali 7-5, 6-1

1st Doubles — James Wood/Mason Grove beat Griffin Murch/Anselm Aguerra 7-6(7-3), 6-2

2nd Doubles — Zach Ginnings/Andrew Aparicio lost to Dominic Lizardi/Drew Groel 6-2, 6-2

3rd Doubles — Miles Davidson/Koby Schreiber lost to Parker Holloway/David Nagai 6-2, 6-2

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Sean Toomey-Stout tossed in 12 points Saturday as Coupeville clashed with The Bush School. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

They are a team in transition. Full of promise but searching for the perfect fit.

Somewhat young, largely inexperienced, learning on the fly, the Coupeville High School varsity boys basketball team has moments when everything clicks, and moments when … they don’t.

Saturday night was a classic example, as the Wolves, even playing without their lone senior, came out focused and clicking on all cylinders, set their foes back on their heels, but couldn’t quite complete the full knock-out.

Unable to stop the suddenly nuclear Kai Osaka, who poured in 19 of his game-high 26 points after the halftime break, Coupeville saw a winnable game slip away, falling 49-30 to The Bush School.

The home non-conference loss drops the Wolves to 0-2.

In the moment, it stings a bit, as Coupeville led from the opening tip until midway through the second quarter, and was still down just four at the half.

But the effort shown, the hustle and desire, and the willingness to learn and improve, provides some salve for Wolf coach Brad Sherman.

“We played a lot tougher (than in our first game) and rebounded the ball a lot better,” he said. “That was very nice to see.

“We came out really strongly in the first quarter and really controlled the beginning of the game,” Sherman said. “The challenge for us is to stay patient in our offense and sustain that patience.”

Coupeville opened the game minus senior captain Dane Lucero, who was earning scholarship money on a visit to Washington State University.

The plus side was the return of big man Gavin Knoblich, who rolled his ankle before the first game, and point guard Jered Brown, who sat out much of the second half against Oak Harbor after being drilled in the chest.

With Brown directing traffic, the Wolves came out firing.

Mason Grove netted a picture-perfect three-ball from the right side to open the game, then Sean Toomey-Stout went to work on both ends of the floor.

“The Torpedo” slapped home a layup, then juked his way through the paint for another bucket, wrapped around a defensive gem in which he climbed to the ceiling to reject a Bush shot into the parking lot.

The visiting Blazers, while solid on the boards, didn’t boast any players remotely capable of standing eye-to-eye with their coach, 6-foot-9 former U-Dub great and NBA vet Steve Hawes.

That left lanky Wolf junior Ulrik Wells plenty of opportunities to use his 6’4 frame to his advantage, and he responded smartly.

A lil’ bank shot off the glass and two note-perfect free throws, set up by a rebound hauled down in traffic, gave Wells four points in the first quarter and sent Coupeville to the first break up 11-8.

Wells wasn’t done, throwing down an explosive block to open the second quarter, spiking the ball like a volleyball kill artist, setting off the Wolf student section into howls of approval.

Unfortunately for Coupeville, it was right after that when things started to slip away a bit.

The Wolves, who had been netting most of their shots, hit a period where the net was unforgiving, eking out just four points in the second quarter.

A put-back by freshman Hawthorne Wolfe and two charity shots from Knoblich kept CHS close, but a Bush basket off a give-and-go right before the buzzer hurt a bit.

Not as much as the start of the third quarter stung, however.

Osaka hit three-balls on three consecutive trips down the floor to open the second half, and before you could say “ouch,” a four-point game soon slid into dangerous 15-point territory.

To its credit, Coupeville didn’t break, scoring the final five points of the third and four of the first six in the fourth, twice pulling back within eight.

Toomey-Stout, in his second game back since missing his sophomore season with a football injury, was a rampaging wild man, forcing the action by slashing into the paint and using his unique left-handed shooting style to bedevil Bush.

Which is why it hurt so badly when the refs, apparently not interested in letting the game turn back into a thriller, whistled “The Torpedo” for his fifth, and final foul, sending him to the bench to be a vocal fan, and not a sweet-shootin’ savior.

Bush used a 13-2 surge to close the game, as the scoreboard turned deceptive at the end, allowing anyone wandering by for the first time to have the wrong impression about how close the game seemed for much of its duration.

Coupeville spread its offense among six players, with Toomey-Stout’s team-high 12 backed up by six from Wolfe and five from Wells.

Grove’s three came courtesy his long trey, while Knoblich and Davison rounded out the scoring with two points apiece.

Brown, who stayed in the gym working on his shot long after the crowd had vanished, ran the offense with style, Jacobi Pilgrim fought the good war down in the trenches and Jean Lund-Olsen showed off his wheels while shadowing Bush guards.

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