Cold shooting chills Cats' win column

Cold shooting, which lead to Mount Si's recent losses against Sammamish and West Valley-Yakima, was the story again last Tuesday as the Wildcat boys dropped a road game 54-40 to the Newport Knights.

Despite the 11 points of senior Luke Landdeck, the team shot only 32.5 percent from the floor in the loss to the team which sent them packing from last year's Kingco Tournament. The Wildcats dropped to 0-2 in Kingco Conference play with the defeat.

The key to the Knights' victory was free-throw shooting. Newport shot 75 percent from the foul-line to offset their own lackluster shooting. The Knights as a team shot worse than the Wildcats at 29.2 percent from the floor. Newport also out rebounded Mount Si on the offensive glass 19-9, helping in their victory.

Mount Si avoided an 0-3 conference start by defeating the Liberty Patriots last Friday at Liberty High School. Landdeck continued his hot shooting, scoring 16 to lead all players for Mount Si. Senior Erik Tierney and sophomore Kyle Clearman added 11 points apiece to pace a 58-48 Wildcat victory. The team's strengths were from the free-throw line and in rebounding. Mount Si shot 77 percent from the foul-line and out rebounded the Patriots 50-30, 24-13 on the offensive glass, helping the Wildcats offset another cold shooting night, shooting only 31.5 percent from the floor.

Drew Fahenrich led the Patriots with 15 points, while Scott Derusha added 13 to pace Liberty, who themselves as a team only shot 32.7 percent from the floor. Mount Si outscored Liberty 26-16 in the second and third quarters to provide their margin of victory.

Going into the holiday break, the Wildcats are currently in third place in the Valley Division, two games back of Sammamish for first.

After five games, Landdeck is the team's leading scorer, averaging 12.2 points per game, while Tierney is pacing Mount Si with 11 points a game. Landdeck also leads in the rebounding category with a quarter of the season in the books, 47 to 39 over senior post Jeremy Johnston. The team as a whole is averaging 44.4 percent shooting from the floor through five games, so the recent offensive struggles are a cause for concern.

The Wildcats currently are in Chatsworth, Cal., near Los Angeles, for a holiday tournament being held at Chaminade High School. Mount Si is one of 16 teams in the tourney. Aside from fellow Washington entrant, King's of Shoreline, all of the other teams are from California.

The Wildcats play Lancaster Friday night at 7:30 p.m., then play Saturday, next Monday and Tuesday.

Mount Si will return home Jan. 3 to play Metro League power Seattle Prep at home in a non-league game. Game time against the Panthers is 7:30 p.m.

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