South Kitsap cuts Capital down to size

"The bigger they are, the harder they fall--although South Kitsap High School's boys basketball team almost made its 58-49 victory over Capital last Friday look easy.Emphasis on almost. Highly-touted Capital and towering center Mike Fey weren't pushovers. They put up a struggle before being chopped down to size by the Wolves' defense and a second-quarter blitz from which the visitors from Olympia couldn't recover.The win kept South Kitsap (4-0) unbeaten heading into tonight's game at Mount Tahoma. It also was another instance of an SK opponent managing less than 50 points, one of the first things proud coach John Callaghan pointed out.Partial credit for the latest defensive gem went to a 1-3-1 zone trap that made Fey, at 6-10 the tallest player on the floor by at least four inches, a non-factor on offense. He was limited to one field goal and five points before fouling out with 6:16 left in the game and his team 12 points behind.We stuck to our plan to defend the big guy, and it worked, Callaghan said, adding SK center Beau Pilon also did an excellent job.Pilon finished with 14 rebounds and eight points. He snagged five of his rebounds in the second quarter, most of which Fey spent on the bench after committing his third foul barely 90 seconds into the period.Capital was leading 21-16 when Fey sat down. From then until halftime, the Wolves outscored the Cougars 17-2 for a 33-23 advantage. The furious rally included an initial two-minute, 10-2 run that was capped by Pilon's rebound bucket and gave the Wolves the lead for good at 26-23.Both teams were aggressive and physical in the third period, but the Cougars continued to flounder on offense, scoring only five points. Two free throws by Buck Savage, via the foul that ended Fey's night, gave South Kitsap a seemingly comfortable 47-33 lead early in the final quarter before Capital finally got in gear. Sweet-shooting forward Jerry Nash buried one of his five three-pointers to cut SK's lead to 47-40 with 3:50 left. Thirty-nine seconds later, the margin was down to six points after the Wolves' John Sehmel missed two free throws, Nash was fouled and he sank one of two freebies.But clutch foul shooting by SK down the stretch, including two each by Sehmel and Ryan Letson, preserved the victory.Sehmel paced the Wolves with 14 points. Letson and Justin Dudley added 11 and 10 points, respectively. Nash finished with a game-high 21 points, 15 of them on three-pointers. Fey had six rebounds."

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