By Ian Ferguson
The Golden Eagles’ strategy of shutting down Blaine’s inside game proved effective, and the Borderites took a loss at home.
Blaine lost the January 26 Northwest Conference (NWC) game against the Ferndale Golden Eagles 65–44.
“It was ugly from the start. They jumped right on us and didn’t let up,” said Blaine head coach Shaun Pile. “They were able to cover [center] Shaq Woods and they did a good job taking him out of the game. They also had a lot of fast breaks and layups off of turnovers and rebounds.”
The score at halftime was 38–24 Ferndale. Blaine outscored the Golden Eagles 20–17 in the second half.
“We did a much better job in the second half on both sides of the ball,” Pile said. “We made some adjustments, but it was too little, too late.”
Point guard Kier Munzanreder led the Borderites with 11 points, including three three-pointers. Woods scored nine and Aaron Shaw scored six.
The Borderites were coming off of a January 24 win at home against Port Townsend. Blaine won that non-conference game 67–53 in what Pile called a solid team effort.
“Everyone played and everyone contributed, so that was a good team effort to get the win at home,” Pile said.
With the win over Port Townsend and the loss to Ferndale, the Borderites are 3–6 in the NWC and 5–12 overall. Their record puts them at seventh place in NWC 2A. The three remaining regular season games are against Lynden Christian, Meridian and Nooksack Valley. All three games are NWC matchups.
The Borderites will travel to Lynden Christian on Thursday, January 27, and the outcome could decide whether Blaine has a chance of making it to the postseason. The top five 2A teams move on to the district tournament, and Blaine has to beat out Bellingham and Sedro-Woolley to get there. Both currently stand at 4–4 in the NWC.
Lynden Christian leads the NWC in 1A, also with a 4–4 record in conference. They will likely be a challenge for the Borderites, Pile said.
“They’re pretty good and they had rest this week, so it will be a tough game in a good environment. Hopefully we can capitalize on our size underneath and spread the scoring around,” Pile said.
It will be the first time the teams have faced each other this season. The game begins at 7:15 p.m.