TOLEDO - On the strength of a swarming defense and hot scoring from guards Kyle Kaino and David Thorne, the Ilwaco Fishermen stifled Toledo 50-39 there in non-league basketball action Monday.
"We came out like a ball of fire," coach Matt Blair said of his team's efforts in their initial game of the season.
The Fishermen took an 8-2 lead on the strength of a lay up off the opening tip from Ryan Cadwell to Dustin Starr. Seconds later, Andy Hudkins jammed a dunk home off a missed shot to ignite the Ilwaco crowd.
"We played very aggressive basketball on both ends of the court all night. I was very pleased with our team's efforts," coach Blair praised. The Fishermen alternated defenses between a swarming man-to-man, a 2-3 zone, and a half court trap. Full court pressure was also a big part of the Ilwaco defensive arsenal.
Blair had special praise for Cadwell as he drew the short straw and had to guard Toledo's tall man, 6-foot-7-inch Artum Terekov from Russia. "Caddy did a great job on Terekov and we did an excellent job of team defense to help him when we needed to," according to Blair. Ilwaco held the talented sophomore to 13 points.
After a fast-paced first quarter, Ilwaco held the Indians to only five points the second quarter, then played Toledo even the second half in the first game for both teams. The Fishermen forced 20 steals while the Indians were able to take the ball away from Ilwaco 10 times. Rebounds were even at 30-30 and the Fishermen fouled 14 times to 17 for the Indians.
Cadwell led the Fishermen in rebounding with eight and Hudkins snared seven boards in the tightly contested victory. Thorne swiped two steals and dished out four assists and "did a nice job of running our offense" at point guard, according to Blair.
The defense of Starr and scoring of Kaino were very instrumental in Ilwaco defeating a perennial Class A powerhouse, in Toledo. Blair had special praise for Adam Ellsworth, Tony Crete, and Ed Guelfi as they played very hard coming off the bench.
Kaino and Thorne were a combined six of six from the charity stripe in the final minutes of the contest to make sure the Fishermen maintained their double-digit lead down the stretch. "Our aggressiveness on both ends of the court gave us a nice win on the road against a quality team," Blair concluded.
In Junior Varsity action the Fishermen were defeated 42-48 despite Randy Wiegardt's 10 points and outstanding defense from Ryan Gray.
Ilwaco 16 12 12 10 -50
Toledo 10 5 11 13 -39
Ilwaco scoring - Kaino 21, Thorne 10, Starr 9, Hudkins 6, Cadwell 2, Ellsworth 2, Crete, Guelfi.
Toledo - Terekov 13
Shooting: Field Goals Ilwaco - 20-52 (38 percent), Freethrows Ilwaco 9-13 (69 percent)