Greg McCorkle
Matthew Horejsi #44 grabs a rebound from Hazen's Emmanuel Oppong. CLICK THE IMAGE ABOVE OR SCROLL DOWN TO VIEW MORE PICTURES

SLIDESHOW: Highline out muscled by Hazen 55-40

The Highlanders come into the Pirates home court with a distinct height advantage and they used it effectively in countering the athleticism of Highline. But in the first period the Pirates fought hard and with a three pointer by Seta Kotoisuva at the buzzer held a 11-9 lead.

Scrappy play by Highline kept them in the game throughout the second period and the Pirates went into the locker room down by only two 21-23.

In the second half the Pirates simply could not keep up the defensive pressure that provided success in the first and Hazen’s taller and more physical front court players would not allow any easy drives to the basket by Highline.

Offensively, Hazen coach Ryan Thompson stuck with his game plan of clogging the paint with his taller players. This tactic eventually paid off, forcing Highline to double team leaving one of Hazen’s shooting guards open on the wing. Highline couldn’t transition quick enough to cover and fell victim to the Highlanders hot three point shooting and at the end of three the Pirates found themselves down 40-26.

Hot hands by Hazen outside the arc was the game changer in this contest. Highline simply couldn’t counter fast enough from their defensive coverage in the paint to get hands on the ball before the shot, and fell to Hazen 55-40.

Montae Rainwater had a team high 9 points for Highline and Hazen’s high scorer was Isaiah Davis with 17 points.

Highlines next game will be at Tyee this Friday at 7:45.

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