Boys basketball squad nearly wins second in row
The Quincy Jacks boys hoops team fell just shy of earning their second consecutive victory Jan. 2, dropping a tough home contest to Toppenish, 71-61.
The Jacks shaved the Toppenish lead down to five points with less than three minutes to go in the fourth quarter, but turnovers doomed the Jacks’ chances of completing the comeback.
The Toppenish game was the first game after the Jacks earned their first win of the season, a one-point victory on the road against Grandview, 55-54.
Against the Wildcats, the Jacks started slow, with 10 turnovers in the first quarter, but in the second half, adjustments on defense and some timely shooting from beyond the arc allowed Quincy to gain ground on the visitors.
The Jacks identified the long-range shooters for Toppenish and tightened their coverage, to force the other players to be the ones firing from long range.
“Let the kids who can’t shoot threes have at it,” Quincy head coach Wade Petersen said.
The Jacks entered the fourth quarter down by 12, but powered by some long bombs by Max Molina, the Jacks had cut the lead in half with five minutes to go in the game.
After Tyson Thornton made one of two free throws to cut the lead to five, a traveling call against Toppenish gave the Quincy fandom hope that the comeback was on with two minutes to go.
However, the Jacks lost their handle on the ball and after the turnover, the Toppenish Wildcats widened the lead with an and-one and never looked back.
“We gotta finish stronger,” Petersen said. “Too many turnovers at the end. We gave up some easy baskets.”
Still, the resillient Jacks had plenty of positives to glean from the game against the Wildcats as well as from their victory against Grandview Dec. 28 on the road.
For starters, the Jacks did not rely on any one player to make a game of it against the Wildcats. Molina and Gates Petersen led the team in scoring with 18 points each.
Thornton had 11 points, Trajan Trevino had eight, and Ignacio Castillo had four.
On Dec. 28, the Jacks put an end to their losing skid and won their first game of the season at Grandview.
“That’s a huge thing to be able to do in the CWAC, win on the road,” Petersen said. “It was great.”
Petersen credited a fuller roster for the win against the Greyhounds.
“Getting everybody healthy, that helps,” he said.
Against Grandview, Molina led the team with 22 points and nine rebounds and Trevino had 14 and three rebounds. Petersen had 10 and nine rebounds. Carlos Solorio had six points and eight rebounds. Castillo had three points and three rebounds. Mike Vega also had a rebound.
Next up, the Jacks travel 15 miles to face their archrivals from the county seat. The game at Ephrata starts at 7:15 p.m Friday, Jan. 5.
Ephrata comes into the contest with a 4-4 conference record, and 6-5 overall, as of Jan. 2.
After Ephrata, the team travels to Selah the next day for the tail end of a demanding back-to-back stretch of the schedule. Game against the Vikings starts at 7:15 p.m. as well. Selah is undefeated at 7-0 (8-0 overall) and is sole proprietor of first place in the CWAC. Next home game is Jan. 12 against Prosser.
The game against Selah starts the second half of the season. The defending state runner-up defeated the Jacks 89-40 in early December.
By Sebastian Moraga, firstname.lastname@example.org