Triumphant return

Just five days after Marvin Williams was sent to the emergency room with viral meningitis, he scored 42 points, tying the Bremerton High School record and helping his team down the North Kitsap Vikings, 74-59.

Williams missed the Knights previous game on Jan. 23 against Central Kitsap because he was at home in bed with the flu.

His condition worsened early Saturday morning, earning him a trip to Harrison Hospital.

“I was just so tired,” he said.

Even though Knights coach Casey Lindberg quickly complemented his scoring effort, Williams gave credit to his North Kitsap opponents for a close game.

Although Bremerton (5-4 league, 8-7 overall) blew open the game after the opening tip 6-0, North Kitsap (2-7, 4-11) started pressing on the in-bounds ball and forced three Knights turnovers. NK quickly swung the momentum to a 13-6 lead before Lindberg called a time out.

By halftime, Bremerton held a 40-39 despite 24 points from Williams.

“We didn’t want to try and score with them,” NK coach Aaron Nations said. But score they did.

The second quarter of play essentially was the Marvin Williams, Jordan Henry show.

With 2:17 remaining, Williams nailed a jumper to tie the score 32-32. Henry, a 6-foot North Kitsap guard, hit a 3-pointer on the next possession to make the score to give NK a 35-32 advantage.

Then Williams popped a three. 35-35.

Then Henry layed the ball in. 37-35 NK.

Then Williams hit two free throws. 37-37.

The back and forth scoring action by both teams continued midway through the third quarter, before NK started missing field goals.

“The third quarter, we didn’t get the defense done,” Nations said. “We wanted to focus on Marvin but not let another player step up and hurt us.” Bremerton’s point guard Phil Houston was out with pancreatitis and expects to miss two or three weeks. Knights senior Josh Johnson replaced him and scored a season-high 15 points.

For NK, Jacob Gonzales had the team-high 15 points. Jordan Henry added 12 and Ryan Young had 10.

Young was frustrated with his team’s play.

“We just got caught in bad defensive positions a lot,” he said. “We weren’t doing what we were focusing on in practice.”

Recently, the Vikings have been working on defense and boxing out in practice.

Young guarded Williams man-to-man throughout the game.

“He’s a great player and great passer,” he said.

Young said they have to remain confident and regain their focus.

“We just have to come out in the next couple days and have a couple good practices,” he said.

In the Bremerton locker room after the game, Lindberg said the game wasn’t the prettiest he had ever seen, but he will take the win.

“I never question our effort,” he said. “Sometimes you have to gut one out. I am just happy the kids played hard.”

The win put Bremerton into a third-place tie in the Narrows League Bridge Division with Shelton High School, while NK fell into a tie for last-place with Gig Harbor.

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