Lake Stevens boys beat Cascade at home on Tuesday last week 63-57, then lost to a touring Australian club team 60-51 in a game played at Cavelero Mid High on Thursday. The split left Lake with a 6-2 Wesco North record (9-5 overall).
Cascade 57 at Lake 63 (January 10)
Lake seemed to be cruising to a relatively easy win when Christian Gasca's three-point play gave the Vikings a 53-36 lead with 55 seconds left in the third quarter.
But Cascade scored the final five points of the quarter, including a banked-in three by Steven Gallardo at the buzzer, then took advantage of Viking turnovers in the fourth quarter to edge to within 59-54 with a minute left in the game.
Kevin Smith converted both ends of a one-and-one to make it 61-54 with 43 seconds left. Gallardo's three-point play with 22 seconds remaining made it 61-57 and there was no more scoring until Christian Gasca's pair of free throws with eight seconds left sealed the final score at 63-57.
Lake shot a blistering 65 percent in the first half to lead by 23-14 at the quarter break and 40-29 at halftime.
Cascade outrebounded Lake by 25-23 with Brady Pahukoa's 13 boards accounting for the majority of the Viking total.
Pahukoa barely missed another double-double, with eight points and also three assists and three steals.
Kevin Smith hit all three of his threes in the first half and finished with 16 points and three steals.
Devin Stoen was also hot, going seven for 12 for the game good for 15 points, plus five assists and three rebounds.
Dakota Tomson contributed 10 points, two assists and three steals.
Gallardo led Cascade with 15 points and 11 rebounds.
Blackburn (Melbourne, Australia) 60 Lake 51 (January 12 at Cavelero Mid High)
Lake gave a very good Australian touring team a battle at beautiful Cavelero Mid High before the visitors superior height and bulk wore down the Vikings in the fourth quarter.
Lake cut an 11-point Blackburn lead to one point on four different occasions late in the third quarter and midway through the fourth but could never draw even.
Rallying Lake in the third quarter was Jared Rahn with eight points including a pair of threes. He finished with 11 points.
Pahukoa's double-double (12 rebounds and 10 points) were instrumental in keeping Lake in the game as the Vikings held the much bigger Australians to a mere 30-28 rebounding advantage.
Lake's scoring was evenly balanced. Gasca had 11 points, Stoen 1l. Smith dished out five assists.
Blackburn led by 17-13 at the quarter, 35-31 at halftime and 46-43 after three. Lake trailed by 50-49 with 4:22 left but could score only two points thereafter.
Lake shot just three free throws in the game, missing all of them, while the Aussies went five for five at the line.
Each team committed 11 turnovers. Blackburn had eight blocked shots to Lake's none.
The win gave Blackburn a 7-2 record on its USA tour, including wins in Kentucky, New York and a 3-1 record in our state (its only loss here was to Curtis of Tacoma).