Geoducks Win on Election Night
Michael Ward had a well-rounded game tonight
November 4, 2008
"It was close towards the end" commented Evergreen head coach Jeff Drinkwine. "But we found a way to win".
Drinkwine was impressed with the Saint's play as he witnessed a late game hustle by SMU close the score within 2 with 5 minutes remaining.
Evergreen was on the scoreboard first, with Geoduck Julio Feliciano (Jr. Tacoma, WA) making the first two baskets to give his team a 4-0 lead.
By halftime, Evergreen had a 48-35 cushion over the Saints. First half stats had Evergreen shooting a field goal success rate of 53%, 41% from three point range and 100% (9-9) from the free throw line. The Saints were 50%, 25% and 91%.
Fans were able to follow election results via the (television in the lobby during the half time break. But once the teams entered the gym for the second period, it was ball time with each fan casting their vote with a cheer for their favorite team.
At one point SMU fell behind by as much as 15 points, but the Saints hustled back into contention the second half to force errors out of Geoduck players.
Shooting fell for the Saints in the second period with the team hitting just 39% of their field goal attempts. It was their success rate at the free throw line that helped keep them in the game, making 13 of 16 attempts.
With just over 5 minutes remaining, SMU's Blake Poole's goal made the score a two point game. Poole forced a turnover by Nathan Menefee (Jr. Tacoma, WA) and the Saints Jake Linton went down court for a 3 point attempt. Linton's long range shooting was off for the game (2-9) and the shot missed the target and the team was unable to tie the game.
Michael Ward (Sr. Kansas City, MO) snatched the rebound and drove down court for the layup point to increase Evergreen's lead to 73-69 with 4:32 left.
As SMU went to their basket on the next play, Feliciano's defensive enthusiasm saw both players falling hard to the court on the play. A fifth foul was called on Feliciano and the 6-8 center limped to the bench with the assistance of trainer Rebecca Johnson.
Nick Moore (Sr. Graham, WA) went to the free throw line for 3 shots after being fouled on his three point attempt. He hit 3 of 3 to increase the Geoducks lead. Evergreen was able to keep their lead to win by 6 points.
While Evergreen's Menefee tied SMU's Linton with 23 points for the game highs, it was a team effort that sealed the win. Nine Geoducks scored in the game and the team has a strong bench to call on when needed.
Said Drinkwine following the game, "We have more height and more depth than last years team".
Evergreen did not fare much better than SMU in shooting percentage the second half, making just 35% of field goal attempts. A solid 95% (18-19) from the free throw line kept them in the game.
Moore added 10 points to the team score. Ward had a well rounded game with 9 points, 4 assists and a block and a steal. Feliciano, Steve Trotter (Sr. Longview, WA) and John Levi III (Sr. Tacoma, WA) each had 8 points with Trotter bringing in 8 rebounds and 3 steals additionally.
The Saints Poole added 15 points and did well under the basket to snag 8 rebounds. Tyler Nixon's 8 points rounded out the teams top 3 scorers.
Evergreen will play Saturday at home in a 2 PM exhibition game with Portland Bible College.