The Gig Harbor Tides clawed their way back into their Class 4A Narrows League basketball game against the South Kitsap Wolves on Wednesday night, but South Kitsap held on to win, 48-42.
“We had it down to five, and then they did a trap, and we turned it over twice in a row,” Tides head coach Bob Boback said. “The defense we were running, the girls didn’t quite understand it. We left them open too many (times). They hit shots. All in all, I thought it worked pretty good.”
Boback said the Tides’ shot selection was an issue. Many were forced and out of the ordinary.
“I think we must’ve shot like six air balls,” Boback said. “One of the things we talked about before the game was, ‘Shoot your shot.’ If you have a shot you like, go ahead and take it, but if it’s not your shot, don’t shoot it. Obviously, some people thought shots they shot were their shots.”
South Kitsap had a big height advantage, something Boback hoped to counter with a fronting defensive strategy in the post.
It didn’t work out the way he hoped.
“We were playing a little gimmick zone, trying to get help behind the people, and the girls knew, I told them that if those two post girls get the ball, they make shots really well down low, so we were trying to front them,” Boback said. “We didn’t do a great job of fronting them.”
Sophomore captain McKenzie Alton led the Tides (8-11 overall, 3-8 league) with 16 points, and junior KJ Keim added 10.
Keim said she focused on being aggressive.
“Throughout the season, and every game, I’ve been working on my driving,” she said. “Tonight, I just tried to keep my eyes on the rim and use my quickness to get there.”
Keim said the Tides could have played better on both ends of the floor.
“We could have worked the ball on offense and had a little crisper, cleaner passes,” she said. “And our defense, we were trying to shut down a couple of the players, and staying on them tighter would’ve helped.”
Regardless of the outcome, Boback was pleased with his team’s effort.
“I love the attitude of this team,” he said. “I always like our heart. They’re girls that love to play, and they play hard. Maybe I confused them with the defenses we were running. But they played hard, and they never gave up, and they’re good. We’re going to be good. This is a great stepping stone for next year.”
Keim said everyone on the team loves to play together.
“We work hard,” she said. “Everyone on this team has a passion for the sport, and that shows every time we get out there. I think, today, we came together and gave 110 percent.”
South Kitsap junior guard Marybeth Bray led the Wolves with 13 points. Junior forward Brianna Shafer added 11.Sports reporter Jon Manley can be reached at 253-358-4151 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.