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Two last wins, on to Lynnwood
Charging back after being upset by Cedarcrest last Friday, the Falcon girls basketball team took victories over Lakewood and Sultan this week in what may have been their best two-game stretch of the season.
The wins also guaranteed that South Whidbey will play 1-17 Lynnwood in a Cascade-Wesco South league crossover game tonight, a game that will determine whether the Falcons make it into the playoffs.
On Tuesday, the Falcons gave hometown fans a big show in their final appearance in Erikson Gymnasium this season. Hosting Lakewood, South Whidbey completed a season sweep of the Cougars in a convincing 65-43 win. Led offensively by junior Caitie Newman with 23 points and Brianne Dumke with 22, the Falcons gave the Cougars no quarter on either side of the ball. They opened the game at a flat run, during which Dumke went solo to the basket several times to pace her team to a 12-4 first-quarter advantage. At the same time, Dumke was busy shutting down Lakewoods top scorer, Laurie Bader. Coming off a game Friday against Archbishop Murphy in which she nailed seven treys on her way to a 23-point night, Bader came into Erikson Gymnasium a marked threat. But against Dumke, she had little room to operate, putting up only two three-pointers for her only six points.
After an almost uneventful, 9-8 second quarter, South Whidbey really broke the game open in the third, when Newman put up 16 points as part of a 24-point period. After that, Lakewood was out of the game and the Falcons played primarily seniors in the lineup in recognition of their final game at home.
It was a great senior night, said Falcon coach John Pyrtek.
Also important in the victory was a near-perfect 21-of-25 night at the free throw line for South Whidbey. The Cougars were 12-of-20.
Against Sultan Thursday, the Falcons did not have quite the spark they showed against Lakewood, but they got the job done. Led by Caitie Newmans 16 points, South Whidbey gapped the Turks 15-4 in the opening quarter, then played keep-ahead basketball for much of the rest of the game. After they opened up a 20-point lead late in the third quarter, South Whidbey backed off a bit, finishing the game with a 17-17 fourth.
The win was more definite than the 47-42 matchup between the two teams on Jan. 19. The Falcons won that one as well, but with far less scoring.
Contributing significantly to Thursdays victory was senior Mary McCune, who had a season-high six points after sitting out most of the season with a knee injury. Pyrtek said this was a good sign for the team.
She may be the X-factor in the playoffs, he said.
Seniors playing their last home game at Erikson Gymnasium Tuesday were Brianne Dumke, Danielle Burton, and Mary McCune.
The Falcons are now 7-5 in the Cascade Conference standings and 11-9 overall.