Boys basketball: Number-one Timberwolves too much for Warriors

The Edmonds-Woodway boys basketball team mounted a furious second half comeback, but eventually came up short, falling 79-60 to the number-one ranked Jackson Timberwolves. The T-Wolves’ 54 percent shooting from the field and too much firepower from last year’s state player of the year, Jason Todd, was ultimately too much for the visiting Warriors.

The game started at a frenetic pace, a pace which Jackson prefers. Todd scored from the baseline, but was immediately answered by a three-pointer from the Warriors own Jason, Jason Smarr. The teams traded baskets for the next few minutes, before Jackson went on a 13-0 run giving home team a 26-14 lead. Todd’s three pointer as the first period ended put Jackson up 32-15. Dan Kingma and Todd led Jackson in scoring with 8 first quarter points. Travis Bakken had 5 for E-W.

The Timberwolves increased the lead to 25 in the second quarter before the Warriors began to battle back. Smarr hit three 3 pointers in a row, sparking a 10-0 run to narrow the half-time deficit to 15, 50-35 in favor of Jackson. Smarr finished the half with 12, Bakken with 8 and Tate Budnick added 7 for E-W. Kingma led Jackson with 13, followed by Todd and Brian Zehr with 11 each. Warriors coach Steve Call said “I was pleased with how we were sharing the ball. Kingma was really tough tonight.”

The Warriors’ half-time adjustments seemed to pay dividends, as they outscored the T-Wolves 16-10 to open the third period. Theo Lebesis contributed a pair of baskets down low, and Bakken and Smarr added a pair of hoops including Smarr’s first dunk in a varsity game. The dunk closed the gap to 11, the closest the Warriors had been since midway through the first quarter. Jackson scored the next three points, but the Warriors had reason for hope as the period ended 64-51 in favor of Jackson.

The fourth period started with a drive and score from Todd, putting Jackson up 15. Bakken and Smarr scored back-to-back buckets, narrowing the lead to 11. Jackson would then put the game seemingly away, going on an 11-4 run to open the fourth period, with Todd responsible for eight of those 11. With just over three minutes left, Bakken fouled out, and with the game decided, both teams cleared the benches.

After the game, Jackson coach Steve Johnson praised the play of the Warriors.”they’ll be a tough team by the time Districts come around,” he said.

Warriors coach Call was encouraged by the second half, mentioning specifically holding Jackson to 29 points and limiting them to only three 3-pointers (as opposed to the 9 in the first half.)  “Travis had a great game, thought we shared the ball well, stayed in it and had a lot of positive energy off the bench,” Call said.

Todd led both teams in scoring with 25. Kingma added 21 for Jackson (1-0, 1-0) and Zehr had 15. The Warriors were led by Smarr’s 20, Bakken’s 14 and Budnick’s 11. Edmonds-Woodway (0-3, 0-1) has its next game Tuesday at home against Lynnwood, followed by a road game at Cascade.

E-W       15 20 16 9 60
Jackson 32 18 14 15 79

Edmonds-Woodway scoring: (0-3, 0-1) Smarr 20, Bakken 14, Budnick 11, Lebesis 4, Holland 4, Polvina 3, Sherrill 2, Rice 2, Dankwa, Edwards
Jackson (1-0, 1-0) Todd 25, Kingma 21, Zehr 15, Wilgress 7, Blake 6, Ozuna 1, Rossi 2

– By Jeff Smarr

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