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TULALIP — It was the biggest game of the young season for the Hawks — and it showed.
The Heritage boys basketball team played with enough intensity to win, but not enough control in a 54-43 loss to rival Lummi Dec. 18.
“If you’re not shooting, you have to play defense,” said coach Matt Tait. “And we didn’t do that tonight.”
That was particularly clear in the second quarter, where Lummi scored 14 consecutive points inside three minutes to end a 24-point quarter and take a 30-12 lead at halftime.
“This is a natural rivalry,” Tait said. “There are just a few schools on reservations and my guys were jacked up and ready to play. I think they let those emotions run too much and that’s something we’ll have to work on: performing in those pressure situations on the court and in life.”
The Hawks shot just 9-of-24 from the field, often settling for long jump shots instead of finding a higher percentage scoring opportunity.
“We usually get inside and can be effective that way, but that didn’t happen,” Tait said.
More over, Heritage made just 6 of its 27 shots from beyond the arc.
“I think the one thing we can take from this is shot selection. Good shooters realize that when they aren’t hitting their shots, they take it to the rim and get to the foul line,” he said.
Lummi took advantage of the missed shots and ran with rebounds. Guard David James and forward Ronomus Revey exploited those opportunities the most.
Leading the Hawks was senior guard Shawn Comenote with 24 points.
A large, animated crowd was on hand to watch the a game between two seemingly state-bound, Class-1B teams.
The loss was the first of the season for Heritage (4-1), and Tait said that it’s no time to panic.
“We’ve got some strong kids with great leadership skills and our record is good,” he said. “We’re still walking that fine line between playing an up-tempo style that they are used to and controlling the ball.”