Local boys fall to Snohomish in home opener

  • Written by Don Mann
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Staff Photo/Don Mann Woodinville’s Connor Zaback comes down with a rebound amidst a sandwich of Snohomish defenders.
It was a knock-down, drag-out, stumble-and-rumble-in-the-Bronx kind of a ballgame, and in the end Woodinville had a shot.

But it wasn’t really the shot they wanted, and it was blocked at the buzzer as the Falcons fell to Snohomish 53-50 in the home opener Thursday.

Woodinville never led in the contest.

Behind the hot hand of freshman gunslinger Tony Miller, the green team stormed back from a 12-point fourth quarter deficit to cut it to 51-50 with 23 ticks remaining.

But the Falcons, already over the limit, were forced to foul, and Pirate point guard Steele Morgan canned them both to make it a three-point game with 15 seconds left — one pressure shot to tie it for the home team and force possible overtime.

Jay Wyrick got it to Tommy Wick who got it to Miller who reluctantly got it to John Villasenor — not exactly what new coach Mark Folsom dialed up in the huddle.

“We wanted Tony coming off a double (screen) staggered from the corner,” Folsom said. “Snohomish did a great job switching defensively, not allowing us to get an open look.”

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Staff Photo/Don Mann Ninth-grader Tony Miller, here working the baseline, led all scorers with 16 points.
Miller, who still attends junior high, led all scorers with 16 points in his home debut — including a rare four-point play. Villasenor added 13. Woodinville scored 24 of its 50 points in the fourth quarter after nearly getting shut out in the third.

Miller’s bomb with 30 seconds remaining in the period ended the drought and that indignity.

Two nights earlier Snohomish got shellacked 62-18 (that’s not a misprint) at home versus Glacier Peak, but Thursday was a brand new can of peaches for the Pirates.

It was also a homecoming of sorts for homegrown Folsom, who played hoops here 20 years ago, and was working the floor for the first time as a head coach.

Afterwards he shrugged off his disappointment.

“Overall our kids are playing hard,” he said. “Implementing a new system and style of play is a process. Snohomish is a tough, physical in-your-face team. Coach Bone does a great job of getting his kids to execute at both ends of the floor. We need to put four quarters of basketball together with an aggressive mentality — finish easy baskets and take care of the ball. The games come down to who does the little things better: turnovers, rebounds, finishing easy buckets and shooting free throws. We shot 9-of-17 (53 percent) from the line. That won’t win close games at this level.”

Folsom on his freshman — the first Falcon frosh ever to play varsity basketball: “Tony’s a great young player and he’s adjusting well to the speed of the game. He’s long, smart and has a great feel for the game. We need him to continue to be aggressive offensively.”

Woodinville hosts Redmond on Friday night.

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