LACEY — The Ilwaco Fishermen boys burst out to a 20-0 lead and beat Northwest Christian 75-45 on Jan. 23.
The Fishermen kept the Navigators scoreless until midway through the second quarter. Zac Tapio blocked a shot on the Navigators’ first possession, and Ilwaco’s defense twice forced tie-ups in the early minutes, setting a tone on defense. Reese Tynkila got a steal and scored in traffic for an 11-0 lead. Michael Aguayo stopped a two-on-two fast break with a blocked shot to keep the shutout going. Ethan Bannister’s second three-pointer made it 20-0, and Ilwaco led 33-12 at half time.
Tynkila, Ilwaco’s versatile six-foot freshman forward, created fast break opportunities during a late third-quarter stretch. He repeatedly pushed the ball or beat the defense down court, creating two baskets and a free throw in a span of about a minute for a 52-28 lead. The Navigators scored six points in the waning seconds of the third quarter: Josiah Salazar-Fox made a three-pointer, and Ryan Griffin stole the inbounds pass and made another three at the buzzer. Ilwaco still led 54-35.
Ilwaco was able to play a deep rotation throughout the game. Robert Woods scored all five of his points in the fourth quarter, making him the tenth Fisherman to score. All 10 of these players scored at least four points and played at least three different quarters. Zac Tapio led Ilwaco with 15 points, Ethan Bannister made four three-pointers for 12 points, Tynkila added 12 and Alex Kaino scored eight. For Northwest Christian Ryan Griffin led the way with 10 points.
Pacific League contender Ocosta beat Ilwaco at home 60-52 on Jan. 21. The Fishermen remained competitive against a Wildcat team that is second in the Pacific League, and that won 70-46 in Ilwaco in December.
The Wildcats led 16-9 after the first quarter, during which Zac Tapio kept Ilwaco alive with seven points. Ilwaco came back to tie it at 26 at halftime.
Coach Tim Harrell said Ilwaco played well enough to win, but simply could not get enough shots to fall. “Otherwise, we would’ve upset them. We missed a few easy ones.”
Tapio had 21 points on eight of 14 shooting and grabbed 13 rebounds. Ethan Bannister scored 13 points for Ilwaco. For Ocosta Anthony Juarez and Dereck Thomas each scored 13 points, and Peter Samuelson added 11.