Foss foils Gig Harbor's comeback attempt

of the GatewayJanuary 8, 2014 

Gig Harbor junior guard Chris Drake hit two of his three 3-pointers in the fourth quarter and finished with 15 points, but Foss' Sam Dabalos-McMahon (10) countered with six 3s and 24 points during the Falcons' 75-69 win over the Tides on Wednesday.

LEE GILES III/STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER

Every time the Gig Harbor Tides cut into the Foss Falcons' lead Wednesday night, the visiting team had an answer.

Senior guard Armond Davis and junior guard Sam Dabalos-McMahon took turns providing the punchline as Foss held off Gig Harbor's late charge, 75-69, at Gig Harbor High School.

Davis scored 27 points and Dabalos-McMahon hit six 3-pointers on his way to 24 points for the Falcons (8-2 overall, 2-1 Narrows 3A), who spoiled Gig Harbor's comeback attempt.

"They had a nice one-two combo there," Tides coach Billy Landram said.

Gig Harbor senior post Nick Edens scored 11 of his 20 points in the third quarter, when the Tides (6-6, 3-1 Narrows 4A) trailed by as many as 15.

But even though Gig Harbor trimmed its deficit to two points on four occasions in the final eight minutes, the Tides never broke through.

"We have a really resilient bunch, a lot of high-character guys," Landram said. "They never think we're that far out of it."

Chris Drake, a junior guard, hit two 3-pointers in the fourth quarter and finished with 15 points. His second three made it 63-61 with 3:33 remaining.

"I was open," he said. "You've just got to step up and hit it."

Gig Harbor hit five 3s in the fourth — Chad Glover, Ryan Rychard and Sam Gagliardi knocked one down apiece — and they finished 15-for-17 from the free-throw line. They were 6-for-6 from the line down the stretch.

"We just need to buckle down on defense," Drake said. "We need to focus on getting those little stops and turn them into big things."

Foss was better in that regard.

When Gagliardi's 3-pointer cut the Falcons' lead to 54-51 to start the fourth quarter, Davis responded with a tip-jam from the right baseline that brought the visiting crowd to its feet.

Gagliardi missed another 3-point attempt, and Davis followed with a bucket in transition. Edens couldn't cash in on a fadeaway 15-footer, and Foss' Chris Reynolds was wide open at the other end for an easy basket.

In just 90 seconds, the Falcons raced right back to a nine-point advantage at 60-51, forcing Gig Harbor to call a timeout.

The Tides' Casey Gearhart then converted two free throws, and Drake's first 3-pointer of the period pulled Gig Harbor within four. Gearhart sank two more from the line after a Foss shot-clock violation to make it 60-58.

But Foss maintained the lead the rest of the way despite continued pressure. Davis sealed it at the buzzer with a breakaway dunk.

Landram said Gig Harbor's recent second-place finish at a holiday tournament in California gave them a boost as the Tides head into the meat of their league slate.

"It made us tougher," he said. "Three games in three nights against some high-quality teams. It does give us confidence. We know what we can do."

Boxscore:

Foss 75, Gig Harbor 69

Foss  18  22  14  21 — 75

Gig Harbor  15  13  20  21 — 69

Foss — Chris Reynolds 6, Olashawan Miller 6, Michel Cocke' 2, Sam Dabalos-McMahon 24, Armond Davis 27, Simon McCann 10.

Gig Harbor — Chris Drake 15, Chad Glover 9, Blake Fulton 6, Nick Edens 20, Ryan Rychard 7, Casey Gearhart 6, Sam Gagliardi 5, Patrick Spieker 1.

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