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Lakewood loses in nail-biter to Coupeville
LAKEWOOD — The Lakewood Cougars boys basketball team faced a tough loss against the Coupeville Wolves, who edged them out 59-57 on Jan. 24.
The Cougars appeared to be the favorites win. Lakewood entered the game with a league record of 2-6, over Coupeville's league record of 0-8.
"[Coupeville] deserved it," Lakewood Head Coach David Choi said. "They played hard."
As the game played out, the Wolves were more then a worthy match for the Cougars, taking the win in the last 30 seconds of the game.
Choi commended the coaching behind Coupeville's upset victory. "That's what hard work will do for you," Choi said. "It will lead to a victory over a good team, and we happened to be on the other end of it."
Coupeville senior forward Anthony Bergeron proved to be a difficult player for the Cougars, since he was able to shoot and play defense.
"He was knocking down his shots," Choi said. "We knew he was a lead scorer."
Choi's adjustments in the second half nearly gave Lakewood a comeback, but it wasn't enough. "Number 13 was just on fire, so we took him out of the game," Choi said.
Lakewood junior Ryan Alford turned on in the second half, sinking three 3-pointers in the third quarter and one more in the fourth quarter. "He's a guy that we count, on game in and game out, to contribute on the scoreboard, so his performance comes as no surprise for our coaching staff," Choi said. "He's been focusing on his defense, and he is constantly getting better, so I'm excited to see what's in store for his future with Lakewood basketball."
Alford lead Lakewood in scoring, in which he contributed 26 points to his team.
The first quarter was intense, with both sides answering each others' goals. The Wolves struck first, scoring two consecutive buckets. Alford was able to get Lakewood on the board, after he went aerial to sink a layup.
After sinking one of two free throws, 6'4" junior Chance Schueller posted up to get another goal for the Cougars, giving Lakewood a brief lead of 5-4.
Lakewood's defense gave them the edge in the first quarter. The Cougars were able to get defensive rebounds, and capitalized on frequently missed shots by Coupeville.
Bergeron became a threat in the first quarter when he sunk a three, giving the Wolves a point lead over the Cougars, 12-11.
The Cougars were able to get back in the lead, executing on free throws and grabbing the rebound. Lakewood led at the end of the first quarter, 16-14.
The Wolves tied the game at the start of the second quarter. From then on, scoring was slow. After Coupeville's timeout at 4:37, both teams turned on and traded goals up until they tied, 24-24 at halftime.
After halftime, Lakewood had trouble keeping up. The Wolves lead the remainder of the third quarter, as Bergeron warmed up in scoring. Lakewood was behind 41-39 at the end of the third quarter.
In a final quarter effort, Lakewood combined goals with a crucial 3-pointer from Alford, giving the lead back to the Cougars, at 46-41. Coupeville caught right back up, tying it 46-46. It turned out to be Lakewood's highest scoring quarter, but Coupeville ultimately took the win.
Getting to the free-throw line helped Lakewood to keep score with the Wolves, as they broke to another lead over Coupeville, 55-48.
It seemed victory was in the Cougars' claws, until the Wolves landed an ill-fated 3-pointer, combined with two unanswered field goals.
With Coupeville back in the lead 57-56, it was just a one-point game in the last 30 seconds. After missed opportunities to catch up from Lakewood, the Wolves took the two point-win.
As of Jan. 27, Lakewood's league record is 2-7 with an overall record of 5-10. On Jan. 25, Lakewood defeated Decatur, 46-34.