The Oak Harbor players and cheerleaders get ready for the national anthem before Wednesday’s game. (Photo by John Fisken)

The Oak Harbor players and cheerleaders get ready for the national anthem before Wednesday’s game. (Photo by John Fisken)

Wildcats give 10th-ranked Warriors a battle / Girls basketball

Although the visiting Edmonds-Woodway High School girls basketball team defeated Oak Harbor 50-27 Wednesday, Jan. 17, the game was far from a breeze for the Warriors.

E-W came into the game with a 5-1 conference record (12-2 overall) and ranked 10th in the state 3A poll; Oak Harbor (0-7, 3-12) sits at the bottom of the league standings.

This game had rout written all over it, but the Wildcats had other plans.

The Warriors’ full-court press forced a cascade of Oak Harbor turnovers, but the Wildcats’ defense helped ease the sting of those mistakes. When Edmonds-Woodway did get open looks, it couldn’t convert.

That combination of defense and the Warriors’ cold shooting kept Oak Harbor in the game for nearly three quarters, then the Edmonds-Woodway offense found some life as the Wildcat defense (and offense) began to tucker out.

“We just ran out of gas,” Oak Harbor coach Jon Atkins said, noting E-W’s superior depth. Eight of Edmonds-Woodway’s players appeared in all four quarters, and a ninth played in three.

With just under three minutes left in the third quarter, Oak Harbor’s Mikaela Cortez scored to tie the game at 24.

It would be nine and a half minutes before the Wildcats would score again, as the Warriors went on a 24-0 run.

Edmonds-Woodway scored the first points of the game, then Oak Harbor scored 7 straight. Samantha Hines converted after a pin-point pass from Mia Littlejohn, Jordan Wood-Pina drained a three-pointer and Jasmine Ford scored after snaring an offense rebound, making it 7-2.

Oak Harbor lead 7-6 at the quarter, but E-W grabbed control and lead 17-11 with 1:47 left half.

The Wildcats didn’t wilt. They trimmed the deficit to 18-15 at halftime and could have led had they been more efficient at the foul line, going 2-for-8.

Oak Harbor trailed by 5 points twice in the third quarter, but buckets by Ford and Littlejohn and two by Cortez helped tie the game at 24.

Spurred by Brooke Kearney, the Warriors took off from there.

Kearney hit a trio of three-balls and scored 11 of the Warriors’ first 15 points in the 24-0 run; Ingrid Forsberg added 4 points during the streak.

Kearny finished with a game-high 16 points.

Hines and Wood-Pina scored 6 points for Oak Harbor, Ford had 5, Littlejohn 4, Cortez 4 and Miranda Wilson 2.

“We played well,” Atkins said. “They are a good team and we tried to slow it down, and it worked well in the first half.”

Oak Harbor plays at Arlington (4-2, 7-7) at 7:15 p.m. Friday, Jan. 19.

Samantha Hines, front, wrestles with Edmonds-Woodway’s Ingrid Forsberg for possession.	(Photo by John Fisken)

Samantha Hines, front, wrestles with Edmonds-Woodway’s Ingrid Forsberg for possession. (Photo by John Fisken)

Kia Ceya passes to a teammate against Edmonds-Woodway.	(Photo by John Fisken)

Kia Ceya passes to a teammate against Edmonds-Woodway. (Photo by John Fisken)

Jasmine Ford goes up on a putback for the Wildcats.	(Photo by John Fisken)

Jasmine Ford goes up on a putback for the Wildcats. (Photo by John Fisken)

Oak Harbor’s Miranda Wilson calls out a play to get the Wildcat offense started.	(Photo by John Fisken)

Oak Harbor’s Miranda Wilson calls out a play to get the Wildcat offense started. (Photo by John Fisken)

Mia Littlejohn pulls down a rebound for Oak Harbor.	(Photo by John Fisken)

Mia Littlejohn pulls down a rebound for Oak Harbor. (Photo by John Fisken)

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