When it comes to boys basketball in the North Sound Conference, King’s sets the bar.
The Knights are a perennial power and flexed their muscles once again in beating visiting South Whidbey 78-45 Tuesday, Jan. 7.
The Falcons, who came into the game with a 9-2 record, hoped to put up a better fight, but for some reason, according to coach Greg Turcott, his club struggles on the road. The Falcons are 2-3 away from home.
South Whidbey’s losses — all away games — were by an average of 21 points. Its average winning margin is 35.
King’s plays an ambitious schedule to prepare for the postseason and owns a deceptive 6-7 won-loss record this season. Four of the losses came in a prestigious holiday tournament against larger schools in Arizona. The Knights also lost by 5 points to 10-0 4A Glacier Peak and by 1 point to 10-1 2A Tumwater.
Turcott said his club simply did not play well at King’s, missing wide open shots and rebounding poorly.
He added that King’s is “beatable” and that when the Knights visit Langley Friday, Jan. 31, it should be “a great game.”
In Tuesday’s lopsided win, King’s set the tone early, exploding for 28 first-quarter points. Tyler Linhardt led the charge with 13 points; Jordan Hansen added 8.
The Falcons couldn’t keep pace, tallying only 10 points in the opening frame. Nick Young scored 5, including a three-pointer, and Dexter Jokinen hit one from long range.
The Knights continued to roll, putting up 23 points in the second quarter and 22 in the third to take leads of 51-21 and 73-36.
Linhardt pumped in 10 points in the second quarter and Hansen tacked on 11 in the third.
South Whidbey’s Sterling Patton hit two and Jacob Ng one from outside the arc to account for 9 of the Falcons’ 11 second-quarter points.
Carson Wrightson scored 10 points with the help of two three-pointers in the third period for South Whidbey; Young added a three-ball.
All of South Whidbey’s fourth-quarter points came on three-pointers, with Jokinen, Wrightson and Patton hitting one apiece.
Eleven of the Falcons’ 16 field goals in the game were three-point shots.
South Whidbey (1-1, 9-3) begins a stretch of four straight home conference games at 6:45 p.m. Friday, Jan. 10, when Cedar Park Christian (2-1, 6-5) visits.
The Eagles, King’s and South Whidbey are expected to fight for the top three spots in the North Sound Conference. King’s beat Cedar Park Christian 57-48 Dec. 18.