Sports

Trojans rammed out of playoffs by Rogers

"Olympic's best chance to win its leap day West Central District Tournament game against Rogers of Puyallup was to get the ball to Ken Waldo, the Trojans' Olympic League MVP.Waldo, a 6-foot-5 senior, wasn't facing the intimidating front line that confronted him in Oly's first-round tourney game, a 74-52 loss to an imposing Kentwood squad. And Waldo performed admirably in his final appearance as a Trojan, scoring a game-high 19 points on 8-for-10 shooting, grabbing 13 rebounds while blocking three shots.But Waldo's efficient performance made it clear he could have had more in the Trojans' season-ending 59-46 loss to Rogers. The Rams' agressive, trapping second-half defense kept Oly from going to Waldo even more often - something the Trojans most certainly wanted to do.Rogers, the No. 6 seed from the South Puget Sound League, rallied from an eight-point defecit to defeat Olympic 59-46 after a physical first half turned into a downright felonious second half.We couldn't even get the ball on the wing (in the second half), Olympic coach Robert Polk said. We'd get in a situation where they would double team us, and we'd get back on our heels ... In the second half, they did a great job on their man defense.In the first half, it was Olympic's defense that was turning heads and rocking heels.Oly dominated the first 16 minutes by corraling Rogers' regular-season leading scorer, aptly named point man Andrew Gard. The 6-foot-1 junior marksman missed all five of his 3-point attempts enroute to a 1-for-10, two-point first half.And the Rams sputtered right along with him. Olympic switched up man and zone defenses, with sophomore Geoff Kelstrup and junior Austin Hendershot - offensive heros earlier in the tournament - getting the bulk of the defensive work on Gard.When another of Oly's host of underclassman perimeter players, junior Ernie Parsons, knocked in a 3-pointer to open the second half, Olympic had its biggest lead of the game at 26-18.But Rogers followed with 15 unanswered points, fueled by Olympic turnovers and a suddenly unguardable Gard. The Trojans committed eight turnovers in the third period and Gard responded with a pair of 3-pointers, one of which he launched from somewhere in Tacoma. Waldo, who had gone to the bench with three fouls halfway through the third quarter, returned to score eight in the fourth. But Oly would get no closer than an eight-point deficit the rest of the way as Rogers made 13 of 22 free throws in the fourth quarter.Gard finished with 16 points after scoring just nine in his first two WCD games combined. Bruising post Isaac Finch added 12 and Nick Stephens 10 for Rogers. After Waldo, Oly's leading scorer was Kelstrup, who had eight.Polk said he will miss the seven Trojan seniors who played their final game for Oly Tuesday. Polk's first year as coach at OHS was 1997-98, the year this year's seniors arrived at Oly as sophomores.He'll especially miss Waldo, a three-year Trojan starter.He's been a pleasure to coach. He's a great individual, a hard-working individual, Polk said. I'm excited about his potential.Nonetheless, Olympic took a step forward with this year's trip to districts. Although the postseason ended in disappointment, Olympic won the school's first district game since 1993 when they downed South Kitsap 68-54 Feb. 26.It's exciting to get a win at districts, Polk said. That was good, and that's something to build on. The kids that will be coming back are going to be a little more excited."

We encourage an open exchange of ideas on this story's topic, but we ask you to follow our guidelines for respecting community standards. Personal attacks, inappropriate language, and off-topic comments may be removed, and comment privileges revoked, per our Terms of Use. Please see our FAQ if you have questions or concerns about using Facebook to comment.
blog comments powered by Disqus

Read the latest Green Edition

Browse the print edition page by page, including stories and ads.

Jul 25 edition online now. Browse the archives.