MARYSVILLE — Bary Gould is hoping for many more games like Tuesday’s opener for the Marysville Pilchuck basketball team this season.
At least the winning part. The Tomahawks’ head coach could do without the overtime.
Gould’s squad held off a resilient Cascade team, with the Tomahawks defeating the Bruins 68-65 in both team’s non-conference season opener Tuesday night at Marysville Pilchuck High School.
“We would stretch it out and they would battle back,” Gould said. “As a fan, watching, it’s a great game. As a coach, you’re going, ‘Man, let’s just put them away.’”
Marysville Pilchuck led most of the way, until Cascade had an 8-0 run in the fourth quarter to tie the game at 48. The Bruins, led by senior Brevin Brown who had nine of his game-high 24 points in the fourth, took a 58-55 lead going into the game’s final seconds.
Then Tomahawks’ senior Bryce Juneau made a contested 3-pointer with 13 seconds left in the quarter to tie the score at 58 and force the overtime period.
“We drew something up for Josh Bevan, our 3-point specialist, and he had the presence of mind to know that he was guarded and not force something. He gave it to Bryce and Bryce didn’t have the presence of mind,” Gould said with a laugh. “He was guarded but he was feeling it. … He’s played in a ton of tournaments and he’ll come up and say, ‘Coach, I got MVP!’ Or, ‘I got the game-winner!’ So he’s had some big shots in his day.
“Bryce Juneau decided to take over right there at the end and put us into overtime. Then he did a few more things in overtime.”
Juneau added four more points in the overtime period and Cole Grinde netted four as well, including two free throws in the final minute to help Marysville Pilchuck secure the victory.
“MP was shooting the heck out of the ball,” said Cascade head coach Darrell McNeal. “This was going to be a tough game and I told my guys that. This wasn’t going to be an easy match. I expected them to come out and shoot the ball, which they did.”
Juneau had a team-high 21 points for Marysville Pilchuck (1-0 overall), which also got 20 from Bevan and 17 from Grinde. The Tomahawks outscored the Bruins down the stretch despite having senior guard Michael Painter, who averaged 16 points a game last season, foul out of the game with 5 minutes, 41 seconds left in regulation.
Gould said his team is used to having a different hero every night. Tuesday night, it was Juneau.
“Really our theme and our motto this year is, ‘Individually, we’re pretty good. Together, we’re really good,’” Gould said. “So different guys are going to have to step up on different nights and that’s what happened.”
Isaiah Gotell had 20 points for Cascade and Trevon Blackmon added 11 for the Bruins (0-1), who battled back throughout the game and never let Marysville Pilchuck take control.
“That’s the way I wanted to see us come out,” McNeal said. “For us to come out and compete and fight like that — that means we’re doing some good things. We want to see what we can do. We want to see if we can bounce back if we get knocked down and I felt like my guys did that tonight.”
Brown netted five 3-pointers and his big fourth quarter helped spark Cascade’s comeback, before the Bruins took the lead for the first time since the first quarter.
“That’s my senior guard. He’s a leader and a returning shooter,” McNeal said. “For him to get those shots and be able to knock those open shots down is helpful. That definitely puts a lot of pressure on the other team.”
The Cascade players wore red T-shirts for warm-ups to honor Marysville Pilchuck, which had a shooting on the campus on Oct. 24. McNeal said the gesture was his players’ idea.
“We wanted to let them know that we’re here with them and we support them,” McNeal said.
The Marysville Pilchuck student section chanted “MP strong” as the final seconds ticked away in the Tomahawks’ first victory of the season.
At Marysville Pilchuck H.S.
Cascade 12 9 19 18 7 — 65
Marysville Pilchuck 13 14 17 14 10 — 68
Cascade–Trevon Blackmon 11, Brevin Brown 24, Edis Hrustic 0, Cameron McGrath 0, Isaiah Gotell 20, Brennen Hancock 2, Justin Gordon 2, Tre Poole 2. Marysville Pilchuck–Bryce Juneau 21, Josh Bevan 20, Michael Painter 2, Cole Grinde 17, Zach Verge 2, Aaron Herrera 0, Nate Heckendorf 6, Hunter Whitney 0. 3-point goals–Blackmon 2, Brown 5, Juneau 2, Bevan 3. Records–Cascade 0-1 overall. Marysville Pilchuck 1-0.