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SK boys tumble at district tourney
"Ryan Letson called the South Kitsap High School boys basketball season a rollercoaster ride.And like all rides, this one came to a screeching halt.SK's drive for a state tournament ended prematurely as the Wolves bowed to Olympic 68-54 in a loser-out game in the West Central District tournament last Thursday in Auburn.After losing to Enumclaw in the first round, SK still had a chance to go to state with three wins in the loser bracket. But the first game was already out of reach when Olympic (15-7) entered halftime with a 41-18 lead.SK (13-9) managed a mini-comeback to start the second half, reeling off 11 straight points to cut the lead to 41-29.But sophomore Geoff Kelstrup's three-pointer put the Trojans up by 14 points, and the Wolves could respond no longer.When the kid hit that three-pointer, that was the biggest shot of the game, SK coach John Callaghan said. The Wolves couldn't handle the sharpshooting Trojan guards, who hit 10 three-pointers.Leading the surge were two underclassmen who averaged less than seven points each entering the tournament.Kelstrup burned the SK defense with seven three-pointers for all 21 of his points .Teammate Austin Hendershot added a trio of three-pointers en route to 17 points.Both guards combined to shoot 14-of-22 from the field.Olympic as a whole could do no wrong as it landed more than half its field goals.The 14-point win could have been by a lot more had it not been for the sharpshooting of a pair of SK future stars.Sophomores Jason Boyd and Tyler Mayfield hit three three-pointers to help bring the score to a more respectable level.But it couldn't bring down the disappointment the SK players were feeling.It's one thing to play well and lose, but to not play well--that's hard to take, Callaghan said. This is a great group of kids. It would have been nice to move on further. The end is always going to be too soon. Only one team ends on a good note.Not only did Olympic's offense roll, butits 2-3 zone defense kept the usually potent SK offense at a standstill. Jason Young was the only SK player in double figures with 13 points.The loss marked the last game for seniors Young, John Sehmel, Beau Pilon, Roger Cooper, Brian Johnson, Zach Sahlberg, Ryan Letson and Kevin Milovac.Sehmel, who will play football at Eastern Washington University next year, said he was proud of the Wolves' accomplishment and his career. But he admitted the team wasn't all there against Olympic.We felt we should have beat Enumclaw, Sehmel said. It was like a piece of us died there. They (Olympic) just came out hitting shots and we didn't. At least we came back and didn't give up.Though the game ended on a sour note, Callaghan said he and his players had a positive talk in the locker room.It was nice to take the time to sit down and to speak their minds, Callaghan said. At least we left on a positive note.While Sehmel and Cooper go on to play college football, Callaghan said any of his seniors could at least play junior college ball somewhere. He said Young was drawing interest from some small four-year colleges, as well as two-year colleges.As for next year's squad, Callaghan said making it to the the district tourney for the first time since 1986 this year was a huge step in the right direction.This is just another building-block for this program, he said.The next team will be able to revolve around varsity experience attained by juniors Buck Savage and Justin Dudley, along with Boyd and Mayfield."