Mount Si Wildcats boys basketball head coach Jason Griffith knows how valuable winning on the road is in the always formidable 4A KingCo division.
The Wildcats improved their overall record to 4-1 during the 2018-19 season courtesy of a 66-44 victory against the Newport Knights on Dec. 14 at Newport High School in Factoria. The Knights dropped 1-4 with the loss.
Mount Si outscored Newport 36-22 in the final two quarters of play, sealing the win. The Wildcats led the Knights by just eight points (30-22) at halftime.
“Any time you win here (Newport High School gymnasium) it is a good win. Rob Marlow (Newport head coach) does a great job with his team. They play hard and they don’t take a possession off,” Griffith said of the Knights. “To come in here and walk out of here with a win is good for me.”
Mount Si junior Tyler Patterson scored a game-high 21 points in the triumph for his team. Wildcats’ junior guard Jabe Mullins added 18 points as well. The Wildcats shot attempts from beyond the arc began to fall in the final two quarters after a subpar first half.
“We were only 4-for-16 at halftime from three (point attempts) but I think in the second half we settled down. The guys got their legs underneath them and started hitting some shots. We certainly have the capability to shoot the ball,” Griffith said. “We started going a little more inside and out in the second half instead of just reversing the ball. I felt like the guys caught it more in a better rhythm.”
Marlow wasn’t deterred despite the defeat to the Wildcats.
“There were some spurts where they (Mount Si) pushed the lead to double digits and we battled back and cut it to single digits. I was impressed with our ability to compete on every single possession,” Marlow said of his squad. “As a group we are still learning how to develop that toughness and togetherness that I really strive for my teams to have. It has been coming along each game. The effort was really good and that is all I can ask for.”
Marlow is optimistic about his team’s chances for success as the 2018-19 season progresses on the hardwood.
“We’re going to just take it game by game. We want to have a chance to compete in the KingCo tournament and get to the district tournament,” Marlow said. “We would be excited with that opportunity. The guys are hungry to compete in each and every game. We’re going to see where it takes us.”