By Greg Sellentin
The first tournament of the season for the boys and girls JV and Varsity basketball teams was held at Friday Harbor High School on Friday, Dec. 2, and Saturday, Dec. 3. Six visiting teams came to the Friday Harbor Tip Off Classic — Overlake, Meridian and Seattle Lutheran for the boys, and Coupeville, Seattle Academy and Seattle Lutheran for the girls.
“This was the third year we’ve hosted the tournament, and there was great competition among all the teams. The girls were one bucket away from winning the tournament — it was exciting,” said FHHS Athletic Director and Boys Varsity Basketball Coach Rod Turnbull.
Friday night saw the boys team losing to Seattle Lutheran, but bouncing back on Saturday afternoon to edge out Meridian in a closely fought back-and-forth battle.
“We played better on Saturday. The team had more energy, there was more team involvement, and it was nice to see,” said Coach Turnbull. “The guys were more focused on playing the game, and not worried about winning or the crowd. Friday night was our first home game, and we just didn’t have the focus. Even though we have kids returning to the team, we found out we didn’t have as much game experience as a team and we definitely took a step forward with this experience over the weekend.”
The girls team romped Seattle Lutheran on Saturday, but suffered a close loss on Saturday to Coupeville, almost winning the tournament.
“It was a good weekend for us. The tournament is a nice way to start for both the boys and girls. The important game for us was on Friday. Lutheran is also a 2B team and we will see them again in the district tournament. I’m extremely proud of the way these girls are playing. Defensively, they executed with a high level of speed and intensity. But you never do things as well as you will in late January, when the team gets more used to playing together and really comes together as a team and the chemistry gels. The bigger thing is really that there are a lot of new faces this year. We lost four starting seniors from last year. Our defense gave us loads of opportunities on Saturday — we tied the game with 12 seconds left because of our defense. We had an opportunity and they hit the last-second shot. Our girls played fast and are fun to watch, every single one of those girls played hard on defense both days,” said Girls Varisty Basketball Coach Fred Woods.
Girls: Friday Harbor vs. Seattle Lutheran
Home 47, Guest 25
Boys: Friday Harbor vs. Seattle Lutheran
Home 44, Guest 59
Boys: Friday Harbor vs. Meridian
Home 56, Guest 49
Girls: Friday Harbor vs. Coupeville
Home 31, Guest 34