By Mike Maltais
The Liberty Bell High School varsity boys’ basketball team captured its first season victory on the road at Omak, but let a second get away at Pateros last week. The Mountain Lions beat the 1A Omak Pioneers of the Caribou Trail League, 40-31, in non-league action Thursday (Dec. 12) but lost to Pateros, 57-51, earlier in the week.
Pateros catches up
The Mountain Lions let a 10-point half-time lead gradually evaporate in the final two quarters as the Billygoats outscored their visitors, 18-8, in the third quarter and 17-11 in the fourth with the help of strong three-point shooting from the perimeter.
“We came out flat in the second half,” said coach Kyle Acord, “and our team rebounding was not what it should be.”
Liberty Bell played the Pioneers close through much of the first and second quarters but went into the halftime locker room with a 16-15 lead that they never relinquished for the remainder of the game.
“Against Omak we tried to make it a top priority to improve our rebounding effort and the guys responded in a big way,” said Acord. “Liam Daily particularly stepped up, coming away with 11 rebounds to go along with 10 points. Willy Duguay and Jaymis Hanson also came up big with eight rebounds apiece.”
Defensively, the Mountain Lions never allowed Omak to break into double digits in any of the game’s four quarters.
“While our offensive output was off against Omak, I was very pleased with our defensive effort,” Acord said.
Sophomore Connor Cooley moved up from the junior varsity team and got to see his first varsity action of the year against Omak.
The Mountain Lions were scheduled to play the Shockers at Waterville Tuesday (Dec. 17). Liberty Bell will travel to Entiat Friday (Dec. 20) for a game against the Tigers.
Liberty Bell vs. Pateros
Liberty Bell 16 16 08 11 — 51
Pateros 11 11 18 17 — 57
Liberty Bell vs. Omak
Liberty Bell 15 11 12 12 — 40
Omak 08 07 09 8 — 32