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Missed free throws doom Wolves | Girls basketball
Basketball is a complicated game, but sometimes the reason for a win or loss can be pinned on one variable.
The Coupeville High School girls basketball team need look no further than the free throw line to zero in on the primary factor in its 42-39 loss to visiting Sultan Friday, Jan. 31.
The Wolves missed 19 free throws in the three-point loss, connecting on only 11 of 30.
Sultan also made 11 but in 13 fewer tries.
The missed free throws dominated discussions after the game, overshadowing another stat that should have been the focal point: Makana Stone's astonishing 24 rebounds.
The 5-11 sophomore also scored a team-high 10 points, but those efforts weren't enough to counter the Wolves' free-throw shooting follies.
The Turks (5-6, 6-11) overcome an 8-1 start by the Wolves to go up briefly, 10-9, in the first period. Coupeville quickly regained the lead, 11-10 at the quarter and 29-23 at the half.
The margin could have been greater, but the Wolves missed 14 free throws (including 10 in the second period) in the first two quarters.
The Wolves led 29-23 after three periods, but Sultan scored six straight points to tie the score.
Back-to-back three pointers by Jessica Hopkins put the Turks up 35-32 with 3:20 left.
Sultan twice pushed its lead to five.
Stone's hoop with 53 seconds left put the Wolves within two, 39-37, then the Turks hit three of four free throws to secure the win.
Maddi Strasburg had nine points for Coupeville, Amanda Fabrizi six, Kacie Kiel five, Bree Messner four, Julia Myers four and McKayla Bailey one.
Courtney Morris paced Sultan with 15 points.
Coupeville (4-7, 8-9) finishes up the regular season this week with three games, then hosts in the first round of the district tournament at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 11.
The Wolves go to Archbishop Murphy (6-5, 7-8) at 6:45 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 4; host Granite Falls (0-11, 1-16) at 6:45 p.m. Friday, Feb. 7; and travel to King's (11-0, 14-3) at 5 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 8.