Boys basketball: Inside strength carries Coupeville to 60-58 win

The Coupeville High School boys basketball team passed the stress test this week.

Tuesday, the Wolves nipped host South Whidbey on Ian Smith's basket at the buzzer; Thursday they came back to edge visiting Cedar Park Christian of Bothell 60-58 in a nonleague contest.

Coupeville (3-7, 5-11) entertains Granite Falls (1-9, 1-15) tonight, Jan. 28, at 7 p.m. and then travels to Sultan (3-7, 6-8) Tuesday, Feb. 1.

The win over Cedar Park Christian was a contrast in styles: the Wolves' inside strength versus the Eagles' long-range attack.

Behind 6-7 Hunter Hammer (24 points, 10 rebounds) and 6-6 Ben Hayes (18 points) the Wolves dominated the paint against the Eagles who had no player taller than 6-3. CPC sank 11 threes to Coupeville's two.

Cedar Park (7-9) held the early edge by draining seven three-pointers on the way to a 23-16 first-quarter lead. The Eagles were on top 33-32 at the break and 46-42 after three quarters.

Down in the final period, the Wolves got a spark from Tyler King's three and a Smith steal and break away bucket, but the big log on the fire was Hammer who bullied his way to 12 fourth-quarter points.

Coach Randy King said, "The guards did a good job getting him the ball, and Hunter did a good job of making himself available."

The game came down to the final shot. The Eagles, trailing 60-58, had the ball out under the Coupeville basket with 1.8 seconds left. They completed a court-length pass and got off an open three but the shot was off the mark.

Coach King said, "We handled pressure well in another close game."

Tyler King scored 10 points and Smith eight to round out the Coupeville scoring and help the Wolves to their highest offense output of the season.

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