With a win over Burlington-Edison, a loss to Squalicum, and two non-conference losses and a non-conference win, the Blaine boys basketball team’s season is rolling along.
On December 18, Blaine opened league play with a 69–51 win at Burlington-Edison. Scoring for the Borderites was spread evenly among several players. Shaq Woods scored 21 points, Ben Adam scored 20 and Kier Munzanreder scored 12. Carson Knutzen contributed seven points, seven rebounds and three assists. Woods had 13 rebounds, earning his second double-double of the season.
“Our defense deserves some credit for the win,” coach Sean Pile said of the Burlington-Edison game. “It was a sloppy game for both teams, but we were able to take advantage of our size inside. It was a must-win game for us and we made sure we took care of business.”
The Borderites went on to host Squalicum on December 22. The Storm are a perennial power in the Northwest Conference, and Pile said the game plan was to shut down their two leading scorers, who have pinpoint accuracy from beyond the three-point line. The Borderites stuck to the plan and shut down the two leading scorers in the first half, but in the second half other Squalicum players stepped up. Blaine was down by three points at halftime, and was trailing by six points with three minutes to play in the fourth quarter. Foul trouble in the final minutes allowed Squalicum to pull away with the win.
“It was a close game throughout,” Pile said. “We did a good job sticking to the game plan, but we had a lot of turnovers. We stopped getting the ball to the big guy underneath in the second half.”
Blaine had 31 turnovers in the game. Woods had 19 points and 20 rebounds for another double-double, but 15 of his points came in the first half.
“It wasn’t that they did anything different as far as covering him, we just neglected to get him the ball as much as we did in the first,” Pile said. “It’s something we need to keep an eye on.”
Woods continued to put up big numbers for Blaine when the Borderites took on Friday Harbor at home December 28. Woods scored 30 of Blaine’s 53 points, but the Wolverines overpowered the home team with a strong start and accurate shooting throughout.
“They jumped on us early and we got ourselves into a hole,” Pile said. “They shot the ball better than we did.”
The Borderites shot 4–21 from three-point territory, and 11–21 from the free throw line. The Wolverines made 22 of 29 free throw attempts.
Blaine defeated Granite Falls in a non-conference home game December 29. The final score was 69–64. With the win, the Borderites are 5–4 overall. The Borderites will return to league play on Tuesday, January 5 with a home game against Mount Baker. The Mountaineers are also 1–1 in league games. The game begins at 7:15 p.m.