LYNNWOOD — Kamiak knew it was going to focus on defense this season. Meadowdale knew it was going to be shooting from the perimeter a lot during the next three months. Tuesday night something had to give.
In both teams’ first game of the season, Kamiak’s defense finished on top, defeating the Mavericks 46-37 in a non-conference game at Meadowdale High School.
“Sloppy,” Kamiak head coach Cory West said when assessing his team’s first game. “But we’ll take a win where we can get it.”
Notes and Quotes from last night’s game
The Knights’ defense and rebounding helped them pull away from Meadowdale. Kamiak outscored its opponent 14-4 in the second quarter thanks to good defense and superior rebounding.
Anthony Berg shined for Kamiak (1-0 overall) at both ends of the floor. He recorded a double-double with 17 points and 15 rebounds, both team highs.
“He’s a warrior,” West said. “That’s huge.”
Thanks in large part to Berg, the Knights out-rebounded Meadowdale 45-35. Their defense also limited the perimeter shooting of Meadowdale (0-1), something the Mavericks think will be their strength this season.
“We faced a bigger, stronger team tonight that was able to beat us on the boards,” Meadowdale head coach Andy Streit said.
Torin Dooley had nine points for the Mavericks, but only one 3-pointer. West said they paid extra defensive attention to him to try to wear him out and keep him from launching 3-point shots. Assistant coaches routinely yelled, “No threes! No threes!” from the Kamiak bench.
Freshman Charlie White added eight points for Meadowdale in his varsity debut, including four straight to open the second half. He routinely drove to the basket and on a couple of occasions got through the Knights’ defense.
The three other starters: Spencer Linton (5), Matt Hirsch (seven) and Brian Feldhaus (eight) rounded out the scoring for the Mavericks.
Meadowdale was only able to score four points in each of the second and fourth quarters, which really set them back. At the start of the fourth quarter, the Mavericks trailed by just four, 37-33, but came out firing desperation shots and quickly found themselves further in the hole.
“We’re gonna need to shoot the ball well to be successful,” Streit said.
West said almost the exact same thing about his Kamiak team. While he says he stresses defense to his players, he also acknowledged, “we gotta get the ball in the hoop more often.”
JD Blacksmith (12 points), Imaan Vicente (nine points) and Ron Manchester (eight points) were the only Kamiak players to score besides Berg.
West chalked a lot of the game up to “jitterbugs,” saying the Knights need to capitalize on open looks.
Both coaches agree that the first game of the season is important so that they can see what they have on their respective squads.
“I think we’re gonna be able to come in and battle teams night in and night out,” Streit said. “We have to minimize our mistakes. I’m encouraged by being able to compete against a really good team.”
Said West: “I want to get better. We got a lot of work to do.”
At Meadowdale H.S.
Kamiak—Wisnubroto 0, Berg 17, Vicente 9, Manchester 8, Carlson 0, Jouett 0, Blacksmith 12. Meadowdale—White 8, Walsh 0, Carlow 0, Over 0, Linton 5, Hirsch 7, Feldhaus 8, Dooley 9. 3-point goals—Linton 1, Feldhaus 2, Dooley 1, Berg 1. Records—Kamiak 1-0 overall. Meadowdale 0-1.