Falcons win big at ATM in boys hoops

They’re on a roll and it isn’t coming too soon.

The South Whidbey boys basketball team beat Archbishop Murphy

63-59 in a crucial Cascade Conference game Tuesday. The Falcons are now 3-3 in the league, 7-5 overall.

The win puts the Falcons in a tie for third place with ATM (also 3-3) behind King’s (6-0) and Cedarcrest (4-1). The top two 2A teams advance to districts after the regular season so each game is important.

A win against Lakewood could move them into the second spot.

“It was a great win for us; our kids did a terrific job in the second half, outscoring the Wildcats 38-23,” Falcon coach Scott Collins said.

“Our defense got better and we did a great job offensively, finding guys that were making shots. We play our best basketball when the ball goes inside first and then outside and we scored a lot on those types of plays,” he said.

The boys agreed — any week you beat the Wildcats is a good one.

“We shot really well,” forward Parker Barnett said. “It gives us a real boost in confidence for the rest of the season.”

Blake Blakey said the team was pumped from the start.

“We were hitting threes and it was opening up inside so we took advantage,” he said. “There’s no looking back now.”

But Collins had a note of caution.

“We are getting better as a team, but we are not where need to be nor where we should be at this point in the season as far as execution goes,” Collins said.

“Our kids need to do a better job of valuing the basketball; we had 22 turnovers and those almost cost us the games and we really need to do a better job of rebounding the basketball defensively.”

The coach added that CJ Baker played extremely well, making shots and getting offensive rebounds and hustle plays.

“He really wants the ball,” Collins said.

“Parker was his steady self and Blake is really coming on strong over these last three to four games, beginning to be an offensive threat for us as well,” the coach said.

“Jeff (Brasko) and Chris (Carey) gave us a nice spark. If we can get them to value the basketball a little bit more they will spark us for 32 minutes instead of in stretches.”

Baker made 25 points and eight rebounds for South Whidbey. Barnett had 14 points and five rebounds, Blakey added 10 points and four rebounds and Carey chipped in seven and four. Brasko and Adam Hosmer had three points each.

After games at Coupeville and Sultan, the boys welcome Cedarcrest on Feb. 1.