No rebound against Lyncs

The chance to stay close and play for the win evaporated early Friday night.

Even during warmups, it looked like it was going to be a tough night of basketball for South Whidbey. Lynden Christian came to Erikson Gymnasium at South Whidbey High School Friday night, bringing with them two girls measuring 6-3 and one of the better records in the North Cascades Conference. Facing them down were the Falcons, who have struggled all season, and even more so in the last few games while lacking injured junior point guard Bronwyn Russell.

The Lyncs set the Falcons on the wrong end of a 55-40 score, knocking South Whidbey's conference record down to 1-6 and jeopardizing the team's chance of making the playoffs.

If only they had played the middle two quarters of the contest like the first and the last, lamented Falcon coach Howard Collier. After watching his team stay within three points of the Lyncs in the first quarter and then light up in the fourth for their only winning quarter of the night, Collier said he knows the potential is there -- it's just not there full time.

"They turned on," he said. "All of a sudden they started to play hard."

Lead by senior Julie Robinson, who had 14 points on the night, the Falcons actually stayed closer to the Lyncs than the score indicated. Though they had a hard time stopping their tallest opponent, Laura Vandenhoek, on her way to 17 points, the Falcons played almost even with the Lyncs in many respects. Though they put Lynden Christian in the bonus early, the South Whidbey girls made 14 free throws on the night to the Lyncs' 18 and shot similarly from the field; 11-for-43 versus Lynden Christian's 17-for-49.

But, Collier said, the Falcons just couldn't win the battle for the ball. The Lyncs outrebounded the Falcons 46 to 30 and gave them few second chances

A 19-9 third quarter essentially finished the game for South Whidbey, even though they came back in the final quarter to outscore the Lyncs 11-5.

Collier said he is looking forward to some better games this week. Russell will be back in the lineup and the team's upcoming contests against Lakewood Thursday and Nooksack at home next Tuesday promise to be more even matchups.

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