Wolves defend home court

Swarming, pesky, confusing, suffocating.

Whichever adjective best describes it, South Whidbey couldn’t solve Coupeville’s second half defense, as the 1A Wolves defeated the 3A Falcons 56-47 Tuesday night.

“Our emphasis is ball pressure and we kind of kicked that in during the second half,” CHS junior guard Mike Bagby said.

Trailing 27-21 at halftime, the Wolves came out of the locker room energized to start the third quarter.

Applying full-court pressure, CHS forced the Falcons into turnover after turnover, eventually taking the lead on a lay-up from sophomore Trevor Tucker with 5:30 to go in the third. Coupeville never relinquished its advantage, going on a 16-5 run to close out the period.

In that third-quarter run, Bagby scored 10 of his game-high 17 points, including two three-point plays and a one-handed breakaway slam dunk.

“That felt pretty good,” Bagby said of the dunk. “It’s a lot different when you’re in a game — you feel it (adrenaline), you get way higher than you usually do.”

Coupeville continued its defensive pressure in the fourth quarter, not allowing South Whidbey to get any closer than six points. The Wolves forced the Falcons into 12 second-half turnovers and 20 for the game.

“That (defense) bothered us,” South Whidbey coach Andy Davis said. “That’s what we expected though. We walked through what they would do last night, we knew exactly what they were going to do.”

The Falcons, who were missing four starters due to academic violations, came out hot to start the contest. They hit 5-of-7 shots, taking their largest lead of nine, 13-4, with 3:20 remaining in the first quarter.

CHS stayed close behind a balanced scoring attack, as seven different players put points on the board.

Junior guard J.J. Marti was second in scoring behind Bagby with 12, followed by senior Blake Day with eight, Tucker with six and senior Andrew Mouw with six. Marti and Mouw also snagged 10 rebounds apiece.

“The kids did a pretty good job of sharing the ball tonight,” CHS head coach Randy King said. “We weren’t accomplishing everything we wanted to, but it’s early in the season.”

One spot the Wolves will have to improve upon is at the free throw line where they hit 12-of-24 shots.

“That wasn’t pretty,” King said. “We didn’t exactly hit our goal (80 percent).”

South Whidbey was led in scoring by Josh Gulvin with 14 and Dustin Sidhu with nine.

The two teams will meet up again in Langley on Saturday, Dec. 11.

With all of South Whidbey’s players expected to be back in the lineup, King anticipates a more difficult game the second time around.

“I’ll be expecting a battle the next time we play them,” he said.

Coupeville took on non-league Meridian last night and travels to 2A Lakewood today, Dec. 4.

Junior varsity tips off at 5:15 p.m., followed by the varsity at 7 p.m.

The Wolves next play at home at 7:30 p.m., Friday, Dec. 10 against league opponent Darrington.

South Whidbey 16 11 7 12 — 46

Coupeville 12 9 19 17 — 57

Scoring: Coupeville — Bagby 17, Marti 12, Day 8, Mouw 6, Tucker 6, Fasolo 3, Mueller 2, Rogers 1. South Whidbey — Gulvin 14, Sidhu 9, Ward 6, Peters 6, Hogmer 4, Parrick 4, Hanna 3.

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