A high-octane first half powered the Liberty Bell High School boys’ basketball team to a 63-53 win at Waterville-Mansfield on Dec. 10, but the Mountain Lions weren’t able to maintain a first-half lead against visiting Tonasket on Friday (Dec. 13) and were edged by the Tigers, 65-61.
The two games left Liberty Bell with a 1-3 record for the season, 1-1 in league play.
The Waterville-Mansfield victory featured a 20-point game by junior Nolan Falcon-George, with freshman Isaiah Stoothoff contributing 12 points and 9 rebounds. Freshman Riley Lidey raked the board for 13 rebounds, and junior Dusty Patterson pulled down 10. The Mountain Lions dashed to a 41-26 halftime lead, and a slight resurgence by the Shockers in the third quarter wasn’t enough.
After trailing early, Liberty Bell rallied to an 18-17 lead in the first quarter against Tonasket. The home team bumped the lead to 33-28 at halftime, and it would have been more had not the Tigers tossed in a 3-point shot at the buzzer.
The Mountain Lions kept a slim lead for most of the third quarter, but in the last minute Tonasket pulled even at 46-46.
The lead seesawed back and forth in the final quarter, with Liberty Bell taking a 4-point advantage, 58-54, with about 3 ½ minutes left. The Mountain Lions would score only 3 more points in the final minutes, but that was enough to keep them within 2 points, 62-61, with 60 seconds remaining. However, the Tigers held on and a Liberty Bell turnover on an inbounds play cost the Mountain Lions a scoring opportunity.
Falcon-George again topped the Liberty Bell scoring column with 17 points, and junior Lucaas Gonzalez-Ortega added 12 to go with 7 rebounds and 5 assists. Patterson pulled down 8 rebounds.
Liberty Bell was at Brewster on Tuesday (Dec. 17), and travels to Manson on Friday (Dec. 20). The next action will be at a holiday tournament hosted by the Mountain Lions on Dec. 27-28, also including Entiat, Pateros and Bridgeport.
Liberty Bell 63, Waterville-Mansfield 53
Deken Smith 9, Riley Lidey 4, Isaiah Stoothoff 12, Sawyer Crandall 4, Nolan Falcon-George 20, Dusty Patterson 8, Lucaas Gonzalez-Ortega 4, Tyler Darwood 2
Liberty Bell 22 19 11 11 63
W-M 7 19 19 8 53
Tonasket 65, Liberty Bell 61
Deken Smith 6, Isaiah Stoothoff 7, Nolan Falcon-George 17, Dusty Patterson 6, Lucaas Gonzalez-Ortega 12, Tyler Darwood 6, Shay Crandall 7
Tonasket 17 11 18 19 65
Liberty Bell 18 15 13 15 61
Scoring through four games:
Nolan Falcon-George 50, Tyler Darwood 30, Isaiah Stoothoff 26, Dusty Patterson 25, Deken Smith 21, Lucaas Gonzalez-Ortega 16, Riley Lidey 13, Sawyer Crandall 13, Shay Crandall 13