Mount Si’s girls basketball team had last won a game three weeks ago, when they beat Sammamish. Last night, they saw the Totems again, and for Mount Si, it was an opportunity to perhaps get themselves back into the swing of a season which has, thanks to offensive struggles and bad weather, become a bit more challenging.
A balanced scoring effort was led by senior Alex Welsh, and the Wildcats took advantage of a number of Sammamish mistakes and defeated a very good, but very young, Totem squad, 51-33. Welsh led all scorers with 10 points. Welsh felt relaxed on the floor, and that proved to be key. “It was a lot of fun. One of the first games I just went out there with the mindset of to have fun,” the senior said.
The two teams opened the game battling for control, and Sammamish had a couple of leads very early on, but Mount Si was able to take control late in the first quarter, then begin to pull away. An Ally Pusich pull-up jumper which ended the first quarter for the Wildcats was an absolute thing of beauty and certainly was an omen for what was to come. Mount Si ended that first stanza up 16-8.
The Wildcats opened the second quarter on a 9-0 run and went into halftime up 28-13. Mount Si maintained control through the remainder of the contest and cruised to the win. “We really were trying to focus on our offense,” said Wildcat coach Megan Botulinski. “We did a good job of pushing the ball up the court.”
Molly Sellers added nine points to pace Mount Si, while freshmen Morgan Mincy and Kelsey Brooks each led Sammamish with seven points. The Totems, coached by Loren Tillman, played well last night, and look to be on the rise within the next couple of years provided Tillman and his coaching staff stay awhile; a main problem which has plagued the Sammamish program in recent seasons has been coaching turnover, with Tillman being at least the sixth or seventh coach this Totem team has had in the past several years.
Mount Si hosts Interlake tonight at 6:30. The Wildcats beat the Saints in the two teams’ first meeting of the season back in December, but Interlake looks to be a tough customer. The Saints are one of the league’s better defensive clubs and are very well-coached, with veteran coach Scott Marcum at the helm down there at Interlake.