By Mike Maltais
The battle between two of the North Central Washington 2B league north division’s unbeaten boys’ basketball teams turned into a largely one-sided contest as the Brewster Bears easily controlled the Liberty Bell Mountain Lions, 84-43, on Brewster’s home court on Dec. 19.
Coming off three straight double-digit wins over Pateros (65-35), Tonasket (70-48) and Oroville (61-44), the Mountain Lions found themselves on the short end of an 8-0 opening rally by the state-ranked Bears before Connor Cooley found his range and gave Liberty Bell its first two points.
Brewster opened with a press against the Mountain Lions and capitalized on steals and turnovers to take a 20-4 lead toward the end of the first quarter before Micah Klemmeck hit a shot at the buzzer to make the score 20-6.
“We ran into a very good Brewster team,” said coach Kyle Acord. “Brewster plays excellent defense, and is able to run the court and put up a lot of points off their defense.”
Brewster’s two big forwards, 6-foot, 6-inch Josh Hammons, and 6-foot, 4-inch Chance Williams, made their presence felt as the Bears increased their lead by 23 points at halftime and to 41 down the stretch.
Senior Willy Duguay “played a very good defensive game for us, matched up against the big guys for Brewster,” Acord said
Hammons was not hitting his long outside shots but scored on close-in put-backs and jump shots, while Williams used his combination of height and size for several points close to the bucket.
Coming back from a 40-17 deficit in the first half, the Mountain Lions opened the third quarter with baskets by Garrett Dornfeld, Cooley, Klemmeck, and Jorge Lara, and missed a number of good scoring opportunities.
“When we were able to slow them down and match up in a half-court defense against them, I thought we did well,” Acord said.
The Bears took a 60-31 lead into the fourth quarter and never looked back as Hammons and Williams continued to capitalize on close-in opportunities.
Following Christmas break, the Mountain Lions were scheduled to be in Leavenworth for the Cascade Holiday Hoops tournament on Monday and Tuesday (Dec. 29-30).
Liberty Bell 6 11 14 12 43
Brewster 20 2 20 24 84
Jorge Lara 7 4 1 3
Ben Klemmeck 0 0 0 0
Jose Dominguez 6 2 0 4
Andrew Reggiatore 0 5 0 1
Connor Cooley 9 5 2 0
Micah Klemmeck 14 5 1 1
Willy Duguay 2 3 1 4
Garrett Dornfeld 5 5 1 0