The Peninsula Seahawks needed a spark Friday night, and their pressure defense and superior rebounding skills provided it.
Peninsula forced many turnovers and converted them on the offensive end as it raced past the Decatur Gators 54-10 for its first South Puget Sound League 3A win of the season.
“We had a snazzy attitude out there,” sophomore guard Shelly Lauderbaugh said. “We just wanted to have good sportsmanship and play like Seahawks play.”
Josie Barncard, another sophomore guard, scored a team-high 10 points, and Lauderbaugh had nine for Peninsula (3-8 overall, 1-1 league).
The Seahawks broke open a close game with a 23-4 run in the second quarter and never trailed in the game.
Decatur (0-6, 0-2) went almost six minutes without a field goal to start the second period and didn’t score after halftime.
“We were really on a quest to try to dominate, try to go hard,” Barncard said. “We really want to start this league (schedule) well.”
Peninsula was in the midst of a six-game losing streak before it beat Mount Tahoma on Jan. 3. Now, the Seahawks had won two of their past three games.
Peninsula coach Steve Jacobson said the playing time some of his younger players received Friday will be valuable down the stretch as the Seahawks try to finish in one of the top four spots to make the playoffs.
“Typically, one of our five goals every game is to rebound,” he said. “The majority of the games, we’ve outrebounded teams, even though we’re 3-8.”
Peninsula corralled 71 boards in a game earlier this season.
“We’ll probably be close to that tonight,” Jacobson said.
“We were pretty aggressive on the offensive end,” he added. “I think we hustled more than they did tonight.”
Twelve of Peninsula’s 13 players scored, including Nadine Pasin, a sophomore who sank a free throw in the fourth quarter, and Mackenzie Walch, a freshman guard who nailed the only 3-pointer of the contest with about three minutes to play.
Much of the fourth quarter was played with a running clock after Peninsula led by more than 40 points.
“There was a lot of friendly passing,” Lauderbaugh said. “We ran more plays at the end. We mostly wanted to get shots up and work on cuts backdoor.”
Barncard said the win will help as they face a tough road test Friday against Auburn Mountainview.
“It gives us confidence, for sure” she said. “We know we can get at it from the beginning. It gives you confidence in your team, because you know they’ll do their best.”