Blackhawks fall three points shy of wins over Reardan, Cashmere
While Cheney’s pair of losses last week were by a combined total of three points, for first-year head coach Chris Dunn, the frustration is that the games with Reardan and Cashmere ended up in the “L” column in the first place.
“We should’ve come out on top with both of them,” Dunn said Monday.
The Blackhawks looked sharp in the first quarter Tuesday at Reardan, opening a 14-4 lead after the first eight minutes. But then Cheney began settling for outside jumpers instead of taking the ball to the hoop, enabling Reardan to rally for a 24-18 lead at the break.
The Blackhawks battled back to tie it at 32 at the end of three, but then watched as the Indians’ Danny Peone scored 12 of his 17 points in the fourth period to lead Reardan to a 54-52 win.
JT Gould led the Blackhawks with 12 points while Brett Wyborney and Keenan Williams each added 11. Peone and brother Skylar led Reardan with 17, and the Indians were helped by a 22-for-26 effort from the free throw line.
Saturday the Blackhawks fell behind big against the visiting Bulldogs, trailing 39-26 at intermission. After an even third quarter, Cheney rallied, led by the offense of Alex Berman and Williams, who combined for 16 of the team’s 22 points in the final period. But in the end the Blackhawks rally fell just short as Berman’s last-second shot at the buzzer missed, giving Cashmere the 69-68 win.
Berman led all scorers with 26 points while Wyborney added 14 and Williams and Ryan Smedley each tossed in 10.
“The kids fought the entire way,” Dunn said of the effort against Cashmere.
Cheney (1-3) has two opportunities to get back into the win column this week if not pulling even in wins and losses. The Blackhawks travel to Freeman (1-0) Friday to take on the Scotties in a game rescheduled from Dec. 6, and return home to face another Northeast A League opponent Lakeside (2-1) Saturday.
Freeman’s only game was a 49-39 win over Granger while the Eagles have knocked off Priest River and Cheney’s fellow Great Northern League opponent Deer Park. Lakeside lost 77-66 to last year’s 2B state champions St. George’s, and both teams should give Cheney a tough, physical match up, Dunn said.
John McCallum can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.