The acrobatics were in fine form Friday night for the Tumwater High School boys basketball team.
The T-Birds jumped out early and often in transition to fly by Black Hills, 64-55, at home.
“It seemed like everything was clicking,” Tumwater guard Jacob Gibbons said. “We got some stops on defense, which led to fast breaks.”
Gibbons led all scorers with 19 points, and sank a 3-pointer two minutes in to give Tumwater a lead it never lost.
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The T-Birds stampeded on a 12-2 run to end the quarter leading 19-6. Ty Gentry — who scored 16 points — added the exclamation point on an alley-oop pass from Brian Marty.
And Marty added to the lead to end the half, when he tipped a blocked 3-pointer backwards into the hoop.
“We knew we wanted to play fast, and move the ball and just make plays in transition,” Tumwater coach Thomas Roswell said.
Which Tumwater did plenty of. The T-Birds capitalized on Black Hills’ 5-of-23 shooting effort in the first half, often converting defensive stops into points.
“I think we got beat on a lot of hustle plays,” Black Hills coach Jeff Gallagher said. “There were things that we can control, and we need to get back to doing it.”
The Wolves entered the break trailing by 18, but opened the third quarter on 9-2 run. They scored on four consecutive trips down the floor, led by Jewell Day, who dropped a 3-pointer to begin the half.
Day finished with 13 points, while Noah Brewer scored a team-high 17.
Black Hills improved to 15-of-25 shooting in the second half, and hit six 3-pointers.
“We had to get out on shooters, that’s where they were hurting us,” Gibbons said.
Late threats by the Wolves were quickly answered, though.
The Wolves cut the deficit to 54-44 with 4 minutes, 33 seconds to play on a Joe Crumley 3-pointer.
“It takes a lot of energy to get back,” Gallagher said. “I thought, when our kids had it down to 10 with over three minutes left, I thought we had a shot at it. But, they closed the game out. That’s what good teams do.”
Black Hills got as close as eight points on another Crumley 3-pointer with 58 seconds to play, but it was too little, too late.
Tumwater, (8-4, 2-0 2A EvCo), scored on its final three trips down the floor to end it.
“You can’t get yourself in a big hole against a team like that,” Gallagher said.
Black Hills 55, at Tumwater 41: The Wolves tallied 21 points in the second quarter to pull away. Emma Duff paced Black Hills with 18 points, while Sammi Payne and Maisy Williams each added 10.
Sierra Snyder knocked down two 3-pointers late to lead Tumwater on an 18-7 run in the fourth quarter, but the T-Birds never trimmed the lead below double digits.
Snyder finished with 16 points for Tumwater, while Mackenzie Bergquist had 13.