ILWACO - The Fishermen sailed by Seaside 54-35 to capture the Ilwaco Christmas Tournament title Tuesday night. The champs out-scored the Gulls 35-16 in the second half and held them to only 14 field goals for the entire contest. The formula of stifling man-to-man defense, a 31-20 rebounding edge, and unselfish offensive effort, was the key to Ilwaco's fifth win in eight tries this season.
Tournament MVP Ryan Cadwell led all scorers with 17 points, topped Ilwaco with 4 assists, 9 rebounds, and helped hold Seaside's 6'4" Vito Cerelli to only 7 points.
Tommy Inserra scored 12 points, hitting on five of six shots from the floor, was 2 of 2 from the line and hauled down 6 rebounds while earning all-tournament honors. Tony Crete also had 6 boards and handed out 4 assists.
The first half gave no indication the game would be a blow out, as the lead changed hands four times with six ties, including a 19-19 deadlock at intermission. The first four minutes of the third quarter turned the tide in the Fishermen's favor as they scored 12 unanswered points. Jordan Williams started the carnage with a layup. Rocky Mirelez then buried two "three's" and Cadwell and Crete took turns assisting each other to easy buckets in the paint.
Inserra hit back-to-back baskets off of offensive rebounds and Ryan Gray and Cadwell sank jumpers to finish a 20-point quarter and give the Fishermen a whopping 39-26 edge. The Gulls were able to make only two baskets and two free tosses in the pivotal third period. Eight minutes later, Williams fed Jarod Schaak for the final layin of the contest and sealed Ilwaco's 54-35 victory.
The Fishermen were 24 of 50 from the field (48 percent) and 4 of 8 (50 percent) from the line while being whistled for 13 fouls while pressuring the ball from baseline to baseline most of the evening. Seaside hit on 14 of 41 tries from the floor (34 percent) and was 6 of 10 from the charity stripe while committing 14 fouls. Ilwaco turned the ball over a dozen times and forced 18 miscues from the Gulls.
Cerelli and John Knutsen joined Cadwell and Inserra on the all-tourney squad. Cascade of Everett pounded Raymond 75-33 in the consolation game and Marcus Guffey of Cascade and Styles Acrey of Raymond were also chosen as all-stars.
Seaside 12 7 7 9 - 35
Ilwaco 10 9 20 15 - 54
Seaside-Toyas 12, Knutsen 8, Cerelli 7, Latham 4, Spivey 2, Wahrmund 2.
Ilwaco-Cadwell 17, Inserra 12, Mirelez 8, Williams 7, Padgett 4, Gray 2, Crete 2, Schaak 2, Wirkkala, Gaynor.