Issaquah Soars Over Bothell in League Showdown
By Steven Dion
The marquee matchup of 4A KingCo on Tuesday night was undoubtedly a clash of the Eagles from Issaquah and host Bothell Cougars. Issaquah (5-4 overall, 4-1 league) are striving to keep pace with undefeated Garfield and create separation with the rest of the Crown division. Bothell (7-4, 3-3) are also in second place in their respective Crest division and are led by dynamic senior Josh Martin. If the Cougs could supply Martin with plenty of shots and get contributions up and down the roster, Bothell would have a great opportunity to send their crowd home happy.
Jason Griffith drew up a near-perfect game plan for this game as Issaquah imposed their will to play the way they wanted to. Their back-court pressure forced several Bothell turnovers early which led to points in bunches. The Eagles scored 24 points in the first frame, 11 of which from the hot hand of Ty Gibson who scored a team-high 19 points. Bothell switched to a zone defense in the second quarter and it paid dividends. Issaquah had difficulty penetrating into the paint and were forced to take outside shots that were not falling as regularly. The Cougars picked up momentum in the second quarter as freshman Josh Kollman buried two from downtown and Martin ignited the crowd with blocks that led to three of his thirteen total field goals in the game. At the break, the game was knotted up at 29 apiece.
The Eagles were eager to mimic their scoring spree in the first quarter and forget about the five points registered in the second as they distributed the rock to their several options on offense. Additionally, Josh Martin’s rebounding ability for Bothell was understood by the Eagles, but limiting boards from the rest of the Cougs was achieved successfully. The Eagles grabbed a seven point lead heading into the fourth quarter and kept the pedal down. The last few comeback spurts by BHS were thwarted quickly and Issaquah was able to pick up a big road win by the final score of 65 to 56.
Josh Martin – 33 points