Vikings end of year basketball update

  • Mon Dec 25th, 2017 1:30am
  • Sports

by Marty Zier

Sports contributor

The lady Vikings dropped games to Mt. Vernon Christian and Auburn Adventist.

Coach Gregg Sasan had an ugly 38-24 loss to the Hurricanes.

“Today did not go the way we planned,” he said. “We did not play well. They pressured us to burn time off the shot clock and we knew they would do that. We forced our passing and did it terribly with 27 turnovers versus 13 for them. We were also horrible from the free throw line making only 6 out of 17. We did not shoot well from the field either. We got them in foul trouble early but we couldn’t make the free throws.”

Scoring was Katy Minnis, 6, Jessie Nichols, 5, Journey Howden, 4, Olivia Brunner-Gaydos, 4, Birdie Greening, 4, and Lindsay Simpson, 1.

The Vikings returned home for a 37-34 non-league loss to the Auburn Adventist Falcons. Sasan saw improvement over the previous day.

“We were trying to get the ball inside for higher percentage shots and it was working,” he said. “Passing was better and we had a chat about the passing in the previous game. We need to keep the ball inside, especially when we aren’t hitting our outside shots. Defensively we picked it up and did a good job. We got them in foul trouble early and did better at the free throw line. We shot 53 percent but need to get better. Our bench contributed and kept us in the game, which is very encouraging for me.”

Viking scoring was led by Nichols with, 10, Greening, 7, Minnis, 4, Howden, 4, Maia Lewis-Shunk, 4, Kern, 2, Brunner-Gaydos, 2, and Joanne Mietzner, 1.

The Viking boys basketball team split the week with a loss to Mt. Vernon Christian and a win against Auburn Adventist.

Coach Corey Wiscomb was disappointed in the 65-54 league loss against the Hurricanes.

“The loss to Mount Vernon Christian was unfortunate in that it was a league game, but there was no disappointment in how the players worked on the floor,” he said. “The Hurricanes took an early 11-point lead and ran a unique press against us and we simply had too many turnovers early on. We committed eight turnovers in the first quarter alone. Seniors Hayden Simpson and Yusuf Duni really kept us alive and fighting the whole game. Duni was a force to be reckoned with as he gathered 14 rebounds and 18 points and in the second quarter Simpson began to find his stroke and finished the game with 22 points, his first 20-plus game of his career.”

Scoring for the Vikings was Simpson, 22, Duni, 18. Max Clark-Mattila, 4, Tomas Holmes, 4, Ciaran O’Neill, 3, Garrett Ballanger, 2, and Kellen Maier, 1.

Orcas returned home the very next day for a 65-54 win against Auburn Adventist. Although not a league game, Auburn will potentially be an opponent at the district tournament in the post-season. Wiscomb was excited with the return of a key player.

“There was a special energy in the air at Orcas High School as the game marked the first return of Senior Vanya Bullock from a severe ankle injury,” he said. “Vanya ups the level of every teammate on the court with him.

It’s been really hard to keep him out, but we also want to be smart and not play him too soon to where he gets re-injured. Overall, that was the best our team has played together all season. Something good happened to us in the past couple of weeks between several different players stepping up to overcome the adversity of injury and learning how to rely on different guys on different nights. One player who had a standout game was Junior Ciaran O’Neill. He was scoring on the opening possession and used his speed to collect six steals and one of the fastest break-aways I’ve seen a player do. He’s incredibly athletic.”

Scoring was very balanced for the Vikings, led by Simpson with 16, O’Neill, 11, Bullock, 11, Clark-Mattila, 10, Holmes, 10, and with Duni, 6.