2B Boys Basketball: Defense Leads Tigers in Wild Win Over Ducks
C2BL: Napavine Beats Toutle Lake 70-67; Peyton Stanley Scores 21 as Rex Stanley Gets 300th Win
By Aaron VanTuyl
NAPAVINE — Rex Stanley’s 300th win on the Napavine bench could hardly have been more exciting.
The Tigers weathered a blistering start by Toutle Lake, adjusted in the second half and got a pair of clutch free throws from Peyton Stanley in the final seconds to seal a 70-67 win and, once again, shift the top portion of the Central 2B League boys basketball standings.
The tight battle, though, was no surprise. The core players in Wednesday’s affair have been playing against each other since the third grade, Stanley pointed out.
“This has been a battle. We play similar styles, and like they say, the styles make fights,” he said. “So when we play toutle, it’s been this way for years — just tight, tight games.”
The Ducks, who were tied with Adna, Toledo and Morton-White Pass atop the C2BL standings heading into the game, lived up to their billing, hitting 8 of 14 from long range in the first half. The shooting, combined with the inside play of 6-foot-5 Michael Adams, helped Toutle Lake lead 46-41 at the break.
“They’re good. They’re similar to us — they’ve got shooters around the outside, with Adams on the inside, and they’re solid,” Peyton Stanley, who went 5 of 8 from long range for a team-high 21 points, said. “They can shoot, and they always have. They’ve always been good from the perimeter.”
Cam Swanson scored all 15 of his points on five 3s, while Nate Hoff had 14 and Adams scored 11 — all before halftime.
At the break, then, something had to change for the hosts, who had no one on the roster with the size to handle Adams inside.
“We talked about, if Adams hurts us inside, that’s one thing, but we’ve got to take something away,” Rex Stanley said. “So we made a concerted effort to get out on shooters.”
The change was drastic; the Ducks went just 2 of 6 from long range in the second half.
“It’s just grit and determination,” Peyton Stanley said. “We’ve got some guys that don’t give up, and we didn’t give up tonight.”
Hoff finished with 21 points and five assists, while Jordan Purvis had six steals and scored 11 of his 15 in the second half for Napavine. Dawson Stanley added 13 points and seven rebounds for the Tigers.
Purvis crossed over his defender and hit a midrange jumper just before time expired in the third quarter to knot things up at 55-55, then opened the fourth quarter with a bucket to give Napavine it’s first lead of the game.
The Tigers went on a 9-0 run early in the fourth, capped with a 3 from Peyton Stanley, to go up 66-57, only to see Toutle respond with a 7-0 run to make it a 2-point game.
Isaac Subitch hit a free throw that put the Tigers up 67-64 with just under a minute to play, and with 24 seconds left Purvis stole the ball in the key and got a clear lane to the hoop on a fastbreak, only to miss an attempted dunk.
“I’m glad we got it out of our system tonight,” Rex Stanley joked of the missed opportunity.
Noah Lantz, however, tracked down the loose ball, drew a foul and hit a freebie to put Napavine up 68-67 — an important lead, as Hoff cashed in a 3 with 7.6 seconds left.
Peyton Stanley got the inbounds pass, drew a foul and hit both of his foul shots to make it 70-67. On the other end Purvis fouled Hoff with 1.5 seconds left; the first foul shot didn’t fall, and an intentional miss on the second shot was snatched by Napavine’s Cade Evander to end the game.
“That was big,” Peyton Stanley said. “They’re definitely going to finish in the top five in our league, and the top five’s tight. So if you can get any win, at home, that’s big.”
The outcome leaves Morton-White Pass (7-1), Toledo (7-1) and Adna (7-1) atop the C2BL standings, with Napavine (6-2) and Toutle Lake (6-2) a game behind. The Tigers play MWP and Adna again as part of their C2BL North Division schedule, though they won’t see Toutle Lake or Toledo — which beat Napavine last week — again until, possibly, the playoffs.
“It’s big, for the simple fact that we only play these guys once, so it gives you the tiebreaker,” Rex Stanley said. “When we play the South, these games are really worth one and a half rather than one.”
Stanley, in his 19th year coaching the Tigers, was bemused by the news of his 300th win.
“It doesn’t seem like I’ve been here that long, but I look around, and I’m closing in on 20 years,” he said. “It’s hard to believe, but that’s what it’s been.”
Notes: Napavine shot 49 percent (27 of 55) from the field. Subitch added 9 points and Lantz scored 8. … The Ducks led by as many as 10 in the second quarter, scoring 23 in both the first and second quarters but managing just 21 in the second half. … Napavine (9-2 overall) plays at Winlock (8-3, 5-3 league) on Friday. Toutle Lake (10-2, 6-2 league) hosts Adna on Friday.
TIGERS 70, DUCKS 67
Toutle Lk. 23 23 9 12 —67
Napavine 20 21 14 15 —70
Toutle Lake (67) — Swanson 15, Hoff 21, Vetter, Adams 21, Grabenhorst 7, Ridge Moss 2, Ryder Moss 1
FG: 26 of 56 —.464 FT: 5 of 11 —.455 Reb. 32 (Adams 10)
Napavine (70) — Purvis 15, Lantz 8, Subitch 9, D. Stanley 13, P. Stanley 21, Evander 4
FG: 27 of 55 —.491 FT: 7 of 13 —.538 Reb. 25 (D. Stanley 7)