2B Basketball: Kittitas Wins Marquee 2B Matchup With MWP
SHOOTOUT SHOWDOWN: Ravet Scores 33 to Lead Defending Champs Past MWP, 71-59; Poquette Scores 32
By Aaron VanTuyl
YAKIMA — The Wilbur-Ellis SunDome Shootout always manages to squeeze a few interesting games into it’s two-day, 28-game schedule — always nonleague affairs, a few days after Christmas, on a larger-than-normal stage at the Yakima SunDome.
Friday’s marquee matchup, featuring two teams responsible for three of the last four State 2B championships and arguably the two best 2B players in Washington, certainly didn’t disappoint from an entertainment standpoint.
Defending state champion and No. 1-ranked Kittitas got 33 points out of Brock Ravet in a 71-59 win over No. 7 Morton-White Pass, despite 32 points from Matt Poquette.
“I thought we competed really well today. I was happy with how we battled,” MWP coach Tony Gillispie said. “They’re — on paper — better than us, and they’re the No. 1 team in the state, so you’ve got to do all the little things right.”
Ravet, a 6-foot-1 junior point guard committed to Gonzaga, scored 17 in the first half and 16 in the second. Poquette, a 6-foot-6 senior who headed from the locker room to Ellensburg for an official visit to Central Washington University, shot 10 of 15 from the field with four dunks, nine rebounds and three assists.
“Ravet’s just a dandy. He’s hard to stop, he gets to the rack real good, and pulls up, so he creates a really tough matchup, and he’s a passer, too,” Gillispie said.
The idea, he added, was to keep Ravet under 30 points; the guard had scored 29 in a loss to 1A Zillah on Thursday night, the Coyotes’ only loss of the season.
“It’s kind of weird to say, isn’t it?” he joked. “Defensively, it wasn’t horrible, but our goal going in was, we figure Ravet’s going to get 30 or 35, and we try to keep everybody else down.”
Poquette drew the defensive assignment of stopping last year’s 2B Player of the Year.
“I think it was a good battle. Brock’s a great player, and I think I’m a pretty good player,” Poquette said. “I was looking forward to playing against him, and it was fun.”
The Timberwolves started slow but picked up the pace in the second quarter, tying things up at 22 when Poquette finished off an alley-oop from Kaleb Rashoff and taking a brief lead at 24-23.
Ravet, however, answered with a pair of 3-pointers, and the Coyotes led 40-31 at halftime.
Early in the second half, though, MWP made a run. Poquette dished to Tristan Storey for a layup, dunked on a fastbreak — drawing a warning from the officials for post-dunk chatter — and stole the ball and layed it up, cutting the lead to 42-39.
That, though, was as close as it would get. Kittitas rattled off a 6-0 run. Ravet then scored 7 straight Coyote points — including a pair of pull-up 15-foot jumpers — that pushed the lead to 12, and the Timberwolves were unable to get closer than 7 the rest of the way.
A few extra turnovers — MWP had 11, while Kittitas had just four — and a handful of missed layups made the difference, as the Timberwolves won the rebounding battle, 32-24. Carson Lewis, Kade Gillispie and Storey added six boards apiece.
Storey and Lewis each added 8 points, while freshman Mason Landdeck scored 14 for Kittitas.
“For the most part, we competed well. Now we know where we’re at. It’s a little measuring stick of how good we have to get to compete over there at state, and get there,” Gillispie said. “You’ve got to play your best against them, and I thought we played okay.”
Poquette concurred with his coach’s optimistic takeaways.
“Obviously we didn’t get the win ,but I’m happy with how we competed,” Poquette said. “A couple things go our way, and anything can happen. So, after this game I’m feeling pretty good about just hopefully making it over to Spokane, and hopefully making some noise over there.”
Morton-White Pass (7-2) plays at Winlock on Tuesday in a Central 2B League game.
Note: Kittitas beat Liberty, 72-69, in last year’s state championship game to finish the 2016-17 season 24-0, and graduated just two seniors — neither of whom averaged more than 5 points a game.
COYOTES 71, TIMBERWOLVES 59
Morton-WP 18 13 14 14 —59
Kittitas 22 18 15 16 —71
Morton-White Pass (59) — Rashoff 7, Gillispie 4, Lewis 8, Poquette 32, Storey 8
FG: 22 of 49 —.449 FT: 13 of 19 —.684 Reb. 32 (Poquette 9)
Kittitas (71) — Harris 2, Lenihan 4, Brown 12, Landdeck 14, Arreols 7, Ravet 33
FG: N/A FT: 15 of 20 —.750 Reb. 24