POULSBO — Tony Chisholm was scratching his head at the end of the North Kitsap vs. Central Kitsap rivalry game Wednesday night. He glanced at the scoreboard, which glared back at him with a score he didn’t like: CK, 75; NK 56.
“What happened?” he asked his team.
Senior Taylor Hoffer, whose presence on the court has been a major factor this season, was the first and only to respond.
“They were making baskets and we weren’t,” Hoffer said.
It wasn’t a clear-cut victory for the Cougars, however, as the Vikings made them work for it.
Jordan Coover fired the team up going into the half with a dramatic, time-stands-still drive to the basket leading into a perfect layup. Some solid Vikings defense and a bit of volleying under the basket resulted in Hoffer tipping the ball in to put a cushion on the lead.
The momentum quickly shifted, as the Vikings, who were leading a hard-won 26-22 at the half, just coudn’t find the basket in the second half.
It also didn’t help that Hoffer, who’s scored double-doubles in most of the games this season, fouled out with 6:49 left in the second half.
Taylor Chisholm, a junior point guard who stands at 5 feet, 10 inches, fouled out soon after.
In true Vikings style, there were two who stepped up in the time of need.
Kyle Erickson had the game of his life and accounted for nearly half the Vikings points, scoring 21 in the game.
The loss comes at a tough time for the 10-7, 5-7 Vikings, who are still vying for a spot in the league tournament. They’re currently tied for second place with Mount Tahoma, who they played last night. Results of that game weren’t available at press time.
Cougars head coach Tim Fryer acknowledged that the Vikings played hard, but ran into trouble with fouls and couldn’t get a handle on CK junior Brandon Durnham, who led the Cougars with 20 points. “(Durnham) just pretty much had his way with them,” Fryer said.
Phillip Thomas also lent a hand or two for the Cougars. His Terminator-esque determination on the court put 18 on the board for CK.
“Any time you win a rivalry game, whether it’s by two points or 20 points, it’s a good victory,” Thomas said.