It wasn’t very pretty, but it was a victory.
Regardless of the game’s lack of beauty, Oak Harbor High School girls basketball coach Jon Atkins said, “I’ll take an ugly win” after the Wildcats defeated host South Whidbey 46-40 Friday, Dec. 13.
In addition to being a foul-filling contest, Oak Harbor shot poorly from the free throw line, hitting only 9 of 27, and from beyond the arc, where it connected on only one.
This allowed South Whidbey to hang around in a contest that looked like an ease win for Oak Harbor before the opening whistle sounded.
The 3A Wildcats entered the game with a 4-0 record; the 1A Falcons were 2-2. South Whidbey’s previous game was 37-point loss to Sedro-Woolley, a team Oak Harbor defeated three days earlier.
Five Wildcats scored in the first period, with Anna Jones leading the way with two buckets, as Oak Harbor jumped to a 10-4 lead.
Jasmine Ford tallied 7 points in the second period, including drilling Oak Harbor’s only three-ball of the game, and the Wildcats widened their lead to 24-15 at the break.
From there, the Falcons hung tough. Oak Harbor received 4 points each from Mikhaela Cortez and Payton Parks in the third quarter, but the Falcons kept pace and nipped 1 point off the lead, 34-26, heading into the final frame.
Cortez added 5 points and Ford 4 in the fourth quarter to hold off South Whidbey.
Oak Harbor sank only three of 10 foul shots in the last period.
Ford led all scorers in the game with 13 points. Cortez had 10, Parks 8, Jones 6, Chloe Frank 4, Paige Fortin 3, Evelyn Osburn 1 and Olivia Waite 1.
Emma Hodson scored 10 for South Whidbey.
The Wildcats (5-0) now head into Western Conference play, going to Everett to face Archbishop Murphy (2-2) at 7:15 p.m. Monday, Dec. 16.