STEVENSON - "They were just a step ahead of us all night," a disappointed Coach Kip Meinhardt said as his Fishermen dropped a 76-62 Trico tilt to Stevenson there Friday in the league lid-lifter for both squads. "The bottom line is we just didn't come out with enough energy and if we don't rebound the basketball better than we did tonight, we are in for a long season."

The Fishermen were down 23-12 at the end of the first period, but came back to within 33-31 midway through the second quarter. "We showed that we can compete with them by getting back into game, but too often our defense was like a sieve and they got far too many second chance field goals from offensive rebounds, especially in the second half when we had to go to a zone because we were in foul trouble," Meinhardt explained.

A key statistic was the whopping 24 to 12 foul disadvantage the Fishermen picked up on the Bulldog's home court. Stevenson shot 27 free throws to a season-low 10 tries for Ilwaco. "This game was like a repeat of when we came here two years ago and lost. We tried to prepare for this type of game and I knew they were going to be tough because they had a very good JV team last season. We even ran a lap outside on the track when we arrived to get the juices flowing, but they played well and were able to beat us at their place."

Jack Whealdon scored 30 points for the Fishermen, but only took four foul shots and point guard Karl Oman never made it the charity stripe for the first time in the sophomore's 30-game career. For Whealdon it was the second consecutive game where he eclipsed the 30-point barrier. Justin Short was also in double figures with 10 points. Ross Kary added six, Oman and Kolby Kirby each scored five, and Cody Bliss and Chris Schommer both added three points.

Ilwaco connected on 24 field goals; including six "three's" and Stevenson made 28 shots from the floor, with four coming from beyond the arc. The Fishermen were accurate from the line, sinking 8-10, while the Bulldogs were given 27 chances at the charity stripe and made 16 (60 percent).

Ilwaco falls to 5-3 on the season and Stevenson improves to 5-2 on the year.

Ilwaco - Justin Short 10, Cody Bliss 3, Jack Whealdon 30, Chris Schommer 3, Kolby Kirby 5, Ross Kary 6, Karl Oman 5

Stevenson - Kyle Cosentino 14, Kyler Dudley 18, Nick Gavenas 6, Cody Lloyd 7, Lewis Meyers 10, Joshua Neblock 6, Andrew Olson 3, Matthew Rathgeber 12,

Ilwaco rebounds to swoop past Gulls 79-60RAYMOND - Coming off a difficult league loss at Stevenson the night before, Ilwaco rebounded to race around Raymond 79-60 Saturday in non-league boys' basketball action, their first road win. The Fishermen cruised to a 22-12 lead after one period and were up by an insurmountable 42-23 at halftime.

Ilwaco's Justin Short had a career-high 18 points for the winners and Meinhardt said, "Justin ran the floor well, made some nice moves down low, and played good 'D' as he always does for us." He had similar praise of Kolby Kirby, who finished with 17 points and four assists. "Kolby always makes the hustle plays and is good on defense and tonight he made a couple of 'three's' and stuck in several put backs after his offensive rebounds."

Jack Whealdon contributed 18 points, four assists and four steals and Karl Oman had a season-high 11 assists, nabbed seven rebounds, scored five and "got everyone involved with our offense" according to Meinhardt. Bobby Byrd also kicked in five points as a reserve and center Ross Kary added four to the Fishermen's winning total.

Ilwaco made 29 field goals, including five treys and converted 16-26 from the foul line (62 percent), while the Gulls sank 21 shots from the floor, including six three-pointers and were 12-24 from the line (50 percent). The Fishermen improve to 6-3 on the year. Meinhardt concluded, "This was an important win for us in order to get back on track as we have two tough league match-ups next week at Kalama (Tuesday) and Castle Rock (Thursday)."

Ilwaco - Justin Short 18, Jack Whealdon 18, Chris Schommer 9, Kolby Kirby 17, Ross Kary 4, Karl Oman 8, Bobby Byrd 5

Raymond - Xaysay 19, Adar 2, Sida 2, Vongmixay 2, Adams 2, Topping 4, Perkins 2, Newarem 8, Phouthachack 10, Lundy 9

Whealdon's 31 helps Fishermen reel in Aussies 74-59ILWACO - Jack Whealdon scored inside, outside, and all around the key as he poured in a career-high 31 points in leading the Fishermen over a long and talented touring squad from Albany, Australia 74-59 Jan. 5, at Carl Aase Gymnasium. The Raiders from "down under" rolled to a 23-19 lead after one period, but Ilwaco's defense adjusted to the pair of 6-foot-7 centers and after nine lead changes in the first three periods pulled away for their fifth non-league victory in seven tries.

The first five minutes of the second half Aussies David Stone and Luke Wilson used their superior height and leaping ability to combine for nine points and tie the contest at 45-45. It was then that the Fishermen picked up the tempo with a half-court trap press and active man-to-man defense and at the 6:26 mark of the final quarter built a 59-47 advantage. Whealdon rattled in two lay ups on feeds from first Karl Oman and Kolby Kirby. He then hit a long three-pointer with 45 seconds remaining and Chris Schommer nailed an old-fashioned three-point play to close out the third frame, giving Ilwaco a 55-47 lead. Kirby's driving, hanging lay in and a pair of free throws upped the Fishermen lead to a dozen points.

The twin towers of Stone and Wilson's combined five field goals brought the visitors to within 65-57 with 4:04 remaining in the final frame, but Oman and Whealdon united to connect on nine of a dozen free throws down the stretch and Cody Bliss's three steals of entry passes to centers nine inches taller than himself helped nail down the win for Ilwaco.

Albany is used to playing international rules, as evidenced by one time getting an offensive goal-tending call, legal overseas, but resulting in the basket being waved off in Ilwaco. The Aussies were assessed 25 fouls to 10 for the Fishermen as their style of play is aggressive, but not mean-spirited. Ilwaco took advantage to hit on 24-35 from the line for 69 percent, while Albany was 4-10 from the stripe.

The Raiders had a decided 42-24 edge on the glass, but by turning the ball over 28 times to Ilwaco's 13 turnovers that advantage was for the most part negated. Albany was 27-48 from the field (56 percent) as they were selective in their shots and got to the hoop often in the first three periods. Ilwaco made 24-54 from the floor for a credible 44 percent accuracy.

Albany - Jai Dakin-Barnes 3, Aaron Byrne 7, Kyle Merritt, David Stone 18, Josh Baker 2, Luke Wilson 15, Mark Hassell 4, Ashley Griffiths, Tom Powell 5, Arthur Liddiard 5

Ilwaco - Justin Short 5, Cody Bliss 4, Jack Whealdon 31, Chris Schommer 8, Kolby Kirby 7, Ross Kary 2, Karl Oman 17

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