South Kitsap girls basketball fans can expect to see plenty of action in Port Orchard this year.
With Pierce County still in Phase 2 of the state’s recovery plan, just about all of South Kitsap’s league games, at least until the next metrics check, will all be home varsity double-headers at 5:30 and 7 p.m. If they don’t move up following the pause, the rest of the league slate will follow suit.
“If Pierce County stays where they’re at, we’re home the rest of the year too,” said South Kitsap head coach CJ Scott.
The rest of the league, with the exception of Olympia in Thurston County, will play at the Washington Fairgrounds in Puyallup on three open-air courts.
All that home-cooking sits well with the players, who will get more chances to play in front of friends and family right in town.
“It’s pretty fun playing at home — you have everyone here,” said sophomore guard Kirstin Prudhomme.
But playing in a high school gym is a different environment than in a larger multi-court facility, such as what you might find at the Tacoma Dome or Yakima SunDome during the state tournament, which could be a tough adjustment for the teams.
“My fear is we’re going to be here all year and then they’re going to hold the SPSL tournament over there in an open-air barn,” Scott said.
Saturday’s matchup with Central Kitsap is one of the few non-doubleheaders in the schedule. With the boys in Silverdale, the girls made their home debut, defeating the Cougars 66-32.
And the Wolves achieved a rare feat in the win — all 12 players on the roster scored at least two points.
“We made sure everyone got to score,” Prudhomme said.
Senior point guard Areeza Amian led the way with 15 points and Prudhomme chipped in 14. The two guards kept the offense running smoothly, getting to the basket with ease for a layup or a kick-out pass to a teammate.
“We’re trying to make an effort to get our posts more involved,” Scott said. “Our guards can get to the basket, and then when the help comes our posts just need to be ready to catch and put it up. We just like to keep the floor spread because our guards are so smart, they do their thing.”
Their ability to drive the lane opened up free throw opportunities, though the team struggled at the line in the first half, going 6-for-18. With a deep roster full of size and athleticism, hitting their free shots will be a key component to out-scoring teams this year.
“We cleaned it up a little in the second half, but we struggled there last year,” Scott said. “We lost games last year for that very reason.”
Bright days are ahead for a program with seven freshmen and a sophomore ready to step in and contribute right away, along with three seniors and two juniors. And their season continues Monday with a game against Graham-Kapowsin before getting into their league schedule Wednesday against Curtis.
“We’re deep, too. I feel comfortable with everyone,” Scott said.
South Kitsap 66, Central Kitsap 32
Central Kitsap6 7 7 12 — 32
South Kitsap 13 16 17 20 — 66
Central Kitsap (32) — Saunders 8, Carroll 7, Copp 7, Baumgartner 6, Sincere 3, Drickell 1.
South Kitsap (66) — Amian 15, Prudhomme 14, Byrd 9, Hughes 6, Hagerty 4, Hoisington 4, Niemann 3, Viergutz 3, Kambich 2, Kelly 2, Linne 2, Loudermilk 2.