Sports

Enumclaw battered but stronger for competition

Coach Ted Carlson wanted his Enumclaw High girls basketball team to experience some tough competition before heading into a rigorous South Puget Sound League 3A campaign.

A pair of nonleague games – first against Auburn High and then Saturday against a touring squad from Post Falls, Idaho –provided just the ticket. And, while no one likes opening a season with two losses, Carlson believes his battle-tested team learned some important lessons during the defeats.

That theory was put to the test Tuesday night when the Hornet girls traveled to Bonney Lake to open the SPSL 3A season; results came too late to be included here. EHS continues its league campaign Friday, hosting Sumner, then slips back into the nonleague mode, hosting the Yelm Tornadoes Saturday evening.

The Hornet girls hosted a tough Post Falls team that was making a short, successful trip through western Washington. Aside from its 53-30 victory in Enumclaw, the Idaho girls also beat Holy Names and Nathan Hale.

“They’re just a real good, solid team,” Carlson said, noting that the Trojans buried some long bombs despite good defensive pressure. Post Falls carries a reputation for deadly shooting from the perimeter and did nothing to diminish that, hitting 12 of 15 shots from the field in the second half. For the game, the Trojans buried eight 3-pointers.

The Hornets made a game of it early, leading 12-11 after one quarter and trailing just 26-19 at the half. Enumclaw managed only 11 points in the second half, though, as the Gem State visitors pulled away.

For Enumclaw, Mara Koplitz was the only one finding double figures, scoring 10.

In the Dec. 2 season opener against Class 4A Auburn High, the Hornets fell short 54-46.

“I thought we played hard, we played tough,” Carlson said, noting that too many miscues proved to be the Hornets’ undoing. Enumclaw was guilty of 28 turnovers.

Jessalyn Clark led the Enumclaw offense with 10 points.

Reach Kevin Hanson at khanson@courierherald.com or 360-802-8205.

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