SILVERDALE — Central Kitsap’s star guard, Colby White, wasn’t given an inch of free space in their non-league contest against Kingston.
Every time White touched the ball, a defender was in his face as the Bucs forced the Cougars to look for their second, third and fourth options.
Fortunately for Central Kitsap, their depth won out. Five different players scored at least three field goals as they prevailed 65-40 on their home court.
“Non-league games are not necessarily about wins and losses, it’s about getting better and creating our identity — figuring out who we are,” said head coach Scott McMinds.
Things were a little grim early as the Buccaneers got off to a better start offensively. Point guard Chris Russell hit a pair of 3-pointers in the first quarter to give his team a 12-9 lead after one.
“We had a lot of unforced errors early, we came out a little flat defensively,” McMinds said.
But the Cougars offense exploded for 26 points in the second quarter. A 10-3 run capped by Ian Massey’s enormous 3-pointer from the top of the key gave Central Kitsap a 20-15 lead. White hit a pair of threes as well late in the second to extend the lead to 35-23 by halftime. White led all Cougars with 11 points.
Central Kitsap was able to effectively spread the ball around and it showed on the scoresheet. White often had a defender in his face, but he was able to distribute the ball to his teammates. That allowed for scoring opportunities for Maurice Green, who finished the game with 10 points and Ethan Searer and Jack Strickland, who each chipped in eight.
Kingston’s Dylan Baze had a game-high 16 points.
The Cougars sit in the middle of the pack in the South Sound Conference as the league season resumes this week and they will get right back to work with key contests against Peninsula and North Thurston. Of course, the team has its eyes on the postseason — the key for this young team will be learning to play consistent basketball in a tough league.
“We are trying to do our best to play our best basketball,” McMinds said. “If we do that, I think the wins will come. But I want the guys to feel good about the hard work they’ve put in and enjoy the journey.”
Central Kitsap 65, Kingston 40
KN 12 11 7 10 — 40
CK 9 26 12 18 — 65
Kingston (40) — Baze 16, Russell 9, Mead 5, Setterlund 4, Greene 3, Trichler 3.
Central Kitsap (65) — White 11, Green 10, Searer 8, Strickland 8, Massey 7, LaBow 6, Johnson 5, Miller 4, Tolentino-Balagtas 4, Boisen 2.
Kingston girls down Central Kitsap 50-39
The Buccaneers had a tough night from beyond the arc, but were able to lean on sophomore forward Ellee Brockman in a 50-39 win over the Cougars on Monday.
Brockman scored a game-high 17 points despite getting into foul trouble in the second half, but she carried her team offensively early. She had 11 of her team’s 14 first half points.
“We got good shots, we just couldn’t make them,” said Kingston head coach Charles Deam.
In the second half, Kingston hit ten 3-pointers to open up a comfortable lead. Leetsah Deam hit three of those and she finished the game with 11 points. Nika Chiquiti connected on both of her 3-point attempts and point guard Kylee Walker hit a pair as well.
“If we can continue to play like that, it will open up a lot for us,” Deam said.
The Bucs are hoping to build off a successful run of games at Surf ‘N Slam at Mission Bay High School in San Diego over the holidays. They played a close game with Hockinson in which they were down by 15 heading into the fourth quarter and ended up falling just short, 56-54. They then beat Daysland of Canada 73-36 in their final game.
They’re hoping to build off of those good games as Olympic League play resumes. Sitting at 1-3, the Bucs have plenty of big games ahead, starting with district rival North Kitsap on Friday night.
“For us, the playoffs start on Friday,” Deam said.
Kingston 50, Central Kitsap 39
KN 6 8 20 16 — 50
CK 7 8 12 11 — 39
Kingston (50) — Brockman 17, Deam 11, Chiquiti 6, Walker 6, Denning 5, Skinner 5.