Hawks use big third quarter to stop Wildcats / Boys basketball

After playing one of its better first halves of the season, the Oak Harbor High School boys basketball team suffered through a disastrous third quarter in a 73-40 loss at Mountlake Terrace Tuesday, Jan. 10.

The Hawks (3-1, 5-6) smothered the Wildcats with an aggressive press after halftime which resulted in numerous turnovers and 31 points.

Oak Harbor played well early, leading 11-9 after one period. The Hawks outscored the Wildcats 19-13 in the second quarter to go ahead 28-24, then blew Oak Harbor away in the third period, jumping to a 59-34 lead.

Wildcat point guard Adam Nelson left the game with an ankle injury in the second period and left Oak Harbor without one of its best ball handlers to tackle the Hawks’ press.

Oak Harbor finished with 28 turnovers, leading to 38 Mountlake Terrace points.

“We had a solid first half,” Oak Harbor coach John Weston said. “We showed a lot of composure, tough defense and really competed in the first half.”

The Wildcats’ second-half mistakes led to easy transition buckets for the Hawks, Weston said, and “they gained a lot of confidence and were able to start knocking down three’s which they were missing in the first half.”

Terrace shot 50 percent from the arc, nailing nine of 18.

Khyree Armstead led the Hawk attack with 20 points, five assists and eight steals.

JJ Mitchell scored 14 points for Oak Harbor.

“JJ was our leader again tonight,” Weston said. “He was the best player on the court for either team at times.

“Gavin Allen had to step in and play big minutes for us with Adam down, and he did a solid job. Kevin Schuldt is also continuing to play more and more and gain confidence as a varsity player.”

Weston Whitefoot added 6 points for the Wildcats; Ty Baker had 4; Joe Arinaza 3; Allen 3; and Gabe Salinger, Ozell Jackson, Nelson, Haven Brown and Schuldt 2 each.,

Salinger finished with three assists, and Justin Ellison had three steals.

Oak Harbor (0-5, 2-10) hosts 15th-ranked Shorecrest (4-1, 12-1) at 7:15 p.m. Friday, Jan. 13.