KENT – They’re simply known as “The Bigs.”
And in Kentridge High School’s biggest game of the season, the foursome stood tall as the unbeaten, third-ranked Chargers beat No. 9 Beamer 69-58 Tuesday in the championship game of the SPSL 4A boys basketball tournament at the ShoWare Center.
“Our bigs all showed up and played well tonight,” coach Dave Jamison said. “They’ve sort of been taking turns. … Tonight, they were like a four-headed monster.”
And they were among the six Kentridge players to score in double figures as 6-foot-7 Joe Wainhouse had 12 and was followed by 6-7 Cristoph Adams (11), 6-6 Danny Torlai (11) and 6-4 Hussayn Ford (12).
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Guards Jawan Stepney and Keasean Kelley had 13 and 12 points, respectively, as Kentridge improved to 21-0. Stepney, who averages 21 per game, showed he’s more than a scorer as he handed out eight assists.
“I hate it when people label me as just a scorer,” he said. “I like to try to base my game on all-around numbers.”
And that’s why he was voted MVP of the SPSL North, according to Jamison.
“He does so many other things,” the coach said.
Bogdon Bliznyuk, the SPSL South MVP, poured in a game-high 21 points. Trey Burch-Manning had 14 points and Charles Frazier contributed 13.
The Titans (16-4) trailed just 62-58 with 2:56 to play, then went scoreless the rest of the way.
Kentridge was up by 10 late in the third quarter, then uncharacteristically threw the ball away several times and Beamer took advantage to jump in front 50-49. The Chargers finally regained their composure, and the lead, at the end of the period.
SPSL tournament @ShoWare Center (Kent)
Curtis 64, Kentwood 52: The seventh-ranked Vikings (18-3) – who don’t have a senior on the roster – used a 17-6 spurt in the second quarter to take control in the game between the second-place seeds from each division. They led just 19-16 before pulling away. Kentwood (15-6) never got closer than 12 points the rest of the way.
Sophomore Aushanti Potts-Woods had 19 points. Junior Tory Causey chipped in 17.
Kentwood freshman Darius Lubom scored 14.
KingCo 3A tournament @Bellevue College
Mercer Island 46, Liberty 36: A comeback attempt by Liberty ran out of steam in the semifinals. The win guarantees the Islanders a first-round bye in next week’s district tournament and gives them a berth in Thursday’s league championship game against Bellevue.
Despite hitting just one shot in its first 16 attempts, Liberty (8-14) trailed just 21-15 at the half and eventually took a 32-28 lead with about six minutes left. Mercer Island (16-5) responded with a 16-1 run, though, to pull away.
Bellevue 58, Mount Si 41: Bellevue proved to be too much for Mount Si as the No. 2 Wolverines pulled away in the semifinals. The Wolverines earn a bye in the district tournament next week.
Sharif Khan keyed an 11-0 run early in the fourth with a trio of three-pointers to put the Wolverines up 52-33.