Each season, Coach Nalin Sood likes to schedule some stern tests for his Mountlake Terrace Hawks boys basketball squad; no one will argue that the team passed their first big test of this season with honors.
Terrace broke open a close game with a big second quarter, then ran away from the Eastlake Wolves for a 78-51 victory on Wednesday in Sammamish.
The match-up had been billed as a rematch of a closely fought game last season, but this year Eastlake couldn’t keep up with the hot-shooting Hawks.
“We were able to get some transition stuff, being aggressive to the basket in the open court, and that got us some good baskets. (That) obviously made a little bit of a difference in the game,” Sood said.
Hawks senior Greg Bowman picked up some of those easy baskets, but also connected with four three-pointers in the game. “I just got good looks – all my shots were pretty much open; that helps,” said Bowman.
Bowman led all Terrace scorers with 32 points; Loren Lacasse ended up with 13 points after being held to just two in the first half. Other Hawks in double-figure scoring included Isaiah Green, coming off the bench to pick up 13, and Yoel Tekle with 10 points before fouling out in the first minute of the fourth quarter.
Bowman acknowledged that the team effort Wednesday was the best so far of the year. “We got a little sloppy toward the end, but I think that was our most complete game so far, defensively and offensively,” he stated.
Terrace (3-0) lit up the scoreboard offensively, with more than 20 points in each of the first three quarters. And after giving up 19 to the Wolves in the first quarter, the Hawks turned up the defensive pressure and held Eastlake (2-2) to just three field goals in each of the remaining quarters.
Traveling down to the Sammamish plateau to take on a solid 4A program is exactly the type of challenge Sood wants to put before his team. “The only way we’re going to get better is to play good basketball teams like this,” he explained.
“They’re a good basketball team,” Sood continued. “Getting on the road, with some of our guys for the first time, different gym, different gym time. We don’t know anything about (Eastlake). We had to go playing them, basically, with no report because it’s impossible to do it, which is good. Because if you get any good, if we ever get to be a good team and make it to Tacoma (the state championships), that’s what we have to do.”
The Hawks have two more tests this week, starting with their Wesco League opener on Friday against a 3-0 Meadowdale Mavericks team that is much-improved from last year. Then on Saturday the team will play perennial power Franklin at Highline Community College, a game that can be viewed live on the Sound Live Sports Network beginning at 6:50 p.m.
MTHS Boys Basketball versus Eastlake, Dec. 11
Terrace 22 22 21 13 — 78
Eastlake 19 9 11 11 — 51
MTHS scoring: Greg Bowman 32; Loren Lacasse 13; Isaiah Green 12; Yoel Tekle 10; Matthew Moisant 9; Gabe Altenberger 2; Prescott Day; Yonnas Tewolde
Eastlake scoring: Jordan Lester 11; Nick Vorhof 11; Jake Davidson 7; Mason Pierzchalski 4; Davis Woerner 4; Eric Uhlar 4; Ben Davidson 3; Josh Colbert 3; Brandon Naluai 2; William Wu 1; Jeffery Feinglas; Aaron Burnham
Records: Mountlake Terrace 3-0; Eastlake 2-2
MTHS next game: versus Meadowdale, Friday, Dec. 13, 7:15 p.m. at Mountlake Terrace High School
— Story and photo by Doug Petrowski