KW splits ‘Classic’

Warrior David Skeels hit a jumper over Sequim’s Ben Webb in KW’s 44-41 win over Sequim at the Pacific Northwest Classic, which the Warriors hosted. - Photo by Jesse Beals
Warrior David Skeels hit a jumper over Sequim’s Ben Webb in KW’s 44-41 win over Sequim at the Pacific Northwest Classic, which the Warriors hosted.
— image credit: Photo by Jesse Beals

The good news for King’s West was getting their first win of the season in an upset of 3A Sequim to open their Pacific Northwest Classic holiday tournament Thursday, Dec. 29.

The bad news was that meant a matchup with juggernaut Port Townsend in the championship game and the Redskins were simply better than the Warriors.

Sequim, a team that lives and dies by the three-pointer, could not hit from outside against a feisty Warrior defense. King’s West point guard David Skeels scored six points in the fourth quarter to help seal the 44-41 win while post player Tyler Lyons controlled the paint with 14 points and 13 rebounds.

The Redskins, however, dominated the Warriors from the get-go in a 56-32 win. King’s West had no answer for tournament MVP Aaron Gifford in the middle as the center went for 21 points. Ross Bringgold joined him in double figures with 10.

“Gifford is a pretty well-rounded player,” said Warrior coach Rick Walker. “He works hard at playing the game.”

Walker felt as if the Warriors could have played more evenly with Port Townsend if not for a lack of hustle.

“We were a little flat tonight and let them get up too high early,” he said. “They were hungrier, when there was a loose ball, (PT) pretty much picked it up.”

Indeed, the Redskins did not take very long stretching their lead to 20 points and maintaining it throughout.

On the positive side, Skeels put together another solid performance, trying to will the Warriors back into the game all on his own at times, with 11 points.

Drew McCullough also came off the bench to add eight points and provide some spark for King’s West.

“Drew needs to get into his mentality that he can penetrate and drive and score,” Walker said. “That’s what we’re trying to get him to do.”

The game also saw freshman Matt Yourk get some experience at the varsity level.

“He’s playing with different guys. He’s the go-to guy at the JV level,” Walker said. “But bringing him up is good for him.”

Overall, the coach was pleased with his team’s performance at the event.

“I’m pleased coming off Christmas break ... coming back and getting ready for league is good for us,” he said. “Having a win is nice to have ... (and) second place, we’ll take that any time.”

The Warriors did open SeaTac League play Wednesday night hosting Northwest Yeshiva and earned a 50-39 win led by 12 points and 14 rebounds from Lyons.

A Thursday battle with Summit occurred after press time.

Girls basketball

The Warrior girls got back in action after a two-week layoff when they paid a visit to Mount Vernon Christian of the Northwest A/B League Thursday, Dec. 29. The Hurricanes improved their mark to 5-4 on the year with a defeat of the 4-4 Warriors, who dropped their second straight. King’s West opened SeaTac League play Thursday night at Summit but results were unavailable from that contest at press time. The Warriors face Shoreline Christian at home today at 4 p.m.

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