Blaine used its height and a big third quarter to defeat the visiting Coupeville High School boys basketball team 50-41 in the season opener Wednesday, Nov. 29.
The Wolves play their first home game at 7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 1, with Mount Vernon Christian. The Hurricanes also lost their season opener, falling 43-41 to Tulalip Heritage Wednesday.
Blaine has four players who are 6-4 or taller, presenting a challenge for Coupeville, which used no one taller than 6 feet.
Kyle V’Dovec, a 6-7 post, led the Borderites with 14 points; 6-4 Adam Vega added 11.
First-year Coupeville coach Brad Sherman said Blaine’s big men hurt them early but his club “adjusted well.”
“(We had a) few guys in foul trouble early on, which always presents some challenges,” Sherman said. “With that said, I thought our kids played a heck of a defensive game as a unit — really aggressive and able to get our hands in a lot of passing lanes.
“Cam (Toomey-Stout) was a beast on defense, and Joey (Lippo) had a heck of a defensive game too.”
The Wolves received three-pointers by Ethan Spark and Hunter Smith in the first quarter, but Vega and V’Dovec countered with 4 points each and Blaine led 15-11 at the end of the first quarter.
The lead grew to 27-19 at halftime, then the Borderites outscored the Wolves 16-6 in the third period to pull away.
Coupeville fought back in the fourth, cutting the gap in half before running out of time.
Smith paced the Wolves with 24 points, Spark had 8, Lippo 6, Hunter Downes 2 and Toomey-Stout 1.
Smith produced a double-double by hauling in 10 rebounds; Spark pulled down five.
“On offense, I thought we moved the ball well and did a pretty good job waiting for good shots,” Sherman said. “Really what it came down to tonight was a ton of open looks that we didn’t connect on. On a lot of nights, a few more of those fall and we are right there at the end.”
Sherman said it would have been nice to come away with a win, but he was proud of how his team fought against a good team on the road.
“Now we learn a few things from (the game) and get back to our goal of just improving every day,” he added. “Tomorrow we get right back to work and get ready for our home opener.”