Capital coach Doug Galloway came into the season knowing his team could score points.
He just wasn’t sure the Cougars could play defense.
Galloway got plenty of both Friday as Capital defeated Yelm, 73-54, in a Western Cascade Conference boys basketball game.
Capital, which returned just one starter off last year’s state qualifier that won 20 games, improved to 13-1.
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“You always hope you can play that well,” Galloway said. “But I am a little surprised. We thought we’d be pretty good offensively. Our concern was being to ‘D’ somebody, stop somebody from scoring.”
Senior forward Alex Williams sparked Capital with 34 points, 10 rebounds and two blocked shots.
“Yelm played tough,” Galloway said. “It was a close game until six minutes to go. We moved the ball well and sank our free throws.”
Capital went 22-for-29 from the free-throw line.
Keith Anderson led Yelm with 17 points on 5-of-10 shooting.
Capital shot 55 percent (25-for-55) from the field. Yelm shot only 34 percent (15-for-44).
“We’re playing well together,” Galloway said. “When we we’re moving the ball and setting picks and looking for the open man, we’re at our best.”
Olympia 44, Gig Harbor 39: It was a good thing Olympia coach Luke Salme didn’t have to worry about his offense.
On an off shooting night, the Bears’ defense came to the rescue in a five-point victory against the Tides in a Narrows League game.
“It’s fun to have kids who take pride in playing good defense,” Salme said. “We’d like to score a few more points, but when you only give up 39 for the whole game you don’t have to.”
Alex Weber-Brader led the Bears (11-5, 7-3), who host Central Kitsap on Tuesday, with 12 points.
Aberdeen 76, Tumwater 75 (OT): Nick Seibert sank a 3-pointer at the buzzer in overtime to give the Bobcats a comeback win.
Seibert scored a game-high 36 points for Aberdeen, which improved to 5-7 overall and 3-3 in the 2A Evergreen Conference.
Jake Dowers’ basket with seven seconds left briefly gave Tumwater a 75-74 lead.
Kyle Warner led Tumwater with 23 points. Warner’s 3-point with 15 seconds left in regulation tied the score 66-66 and sent the game into overtime. Jake Dowers added 17 points for Tumwater.
Capital 46, Yelm 37: The Cougars jumped out to an 18-2 lead and hustled on defense the rest of the way as their offense cooled off.
Yelm kept chipped away at Capital’s lead and outscored the Cougars 11-4 in the third quarter and still trailed 34-23 going into the final quarter.
Yelm never got closer than nine points.
Tosha Hollingsworth, who is averaging 22.8 points and is among the state leaders in scoring, scored a game-high 20 points, and Aria Goodman added 12 for Capital, which improved 10-4 overall and 3-0 in the Western Cascade Conference.
“We went really cold,” Capital coach Colleen Wells said. “But everybody who went into the game kept the same intensity on defense.”
Olympia 54, Gig Harbor 41: Junior guard Olivia Rethwill scored a game-high 19 points and junior center Tessa Briggs added 14, sparking the Bears.
Olympia led 17-8 after the first quarter then held the Tides to two points in the second quarter.
Timberline 53, North Thurston 46: Junior guard Camille Williams scored 17 points, and Timberline held North Thurston to six points in the third quarter to help pull out the win.
Junior center McKenzie Raben added 13 points for the Blazers.
Ciara Williams led the Rams with 11 points.
Tumwater 62, Aberdeen 36: Holding Aberdeen to just 11 points in the second half, the Thunderbirds outscored the Bobcats 32-11 after halftime to pull away.
Tumwater led 30-25 at halftime.
Tayler Weiks, a 5-foot-9 junior guard who was first-team all-conference last season, scored 14 points to lead Tumwater.