Marvin who? Cougars romp Knights

Neil Fryer (No. 34) blocked a shot by Bremerton’s Jeff Frankeberger (No. 44) on Tuesday that ended up in the fifth row of the bleachers. The defensive play of Sam Weller, Brice Brooks and Fryer shut down Bremerton’s offense. - Jesse Beals/staff photo
Neil Fryer (No. 34) blocked a shot by Bremerton’s Jeff Frankeberger (No. 44) on Tuesday that ended up in the fifth row of the bleachers. The defensive play of Sam Weller, Brice Brooks and Fryer shut down Bremerton’s offense.
— image credit: Jesse Beals/staff photo

Same teams.

Same location.

Same result.

For the second time in nine months, the Central Kitsap Cougars beat the Knights by 20 points on Bremerton’s home floor in front of a packed gym.

Last February the Cougars (4-1 overall, 1-0 league) won 74-53 with command performances by smooth shooting Lukas Henne and teammate Sam Weller. Bremerton’s (2-2, 0-1) North Carolina-bound Marvin Williams popped 27 points himself.

This time Weller turned in a stunning 34 point performance, the best of his career, to lead the Cougars to a 75-55 win. And once again, Williams added half his team’s points with 35.

Even though Williams dunked twice within the first two minutes of the matchup Tuesday night to bring the packed crowd to their feet, he still emerged from the locker room after the game saying “we got served” to assistant coach Devin Huff.

Last year, CK knocked the Knights out of the playoffs, and so Bremerton was sucking on pure adrenaline going into this week’s game.

Were they too pumped?

Bremerton coach Casey Lindberg thought so.

“Our kids couldn’t catch the ball,” he said. “Every time we had the ball in our hands it squirted out. It was almost like we were in a fog.

The Cougars’ Brice Brooks, Weller and Neil Fryer put triple-team pressure on Williams the entire game, forcing Phil Houston to take numerous outside shots. He was 1-for-5 from 3-point range.

Weller was a man on fire throughout the game, diving onto the bleachers for loose balls, winding toward the basket, chucking shots in near desperation. Whatever he shot, he sank with ease. He only missed five attempts all night.

Throughout the game, the Knights lost their usual defensive cohesiveness and Weller exploited it to lay in eight baskets with little pressure.

On the Knights side, Williams and Houston caused the most damage all night. Unfortunately, the Knights most dramatic moments of the game came in the first minute, when Houston lobbed up an alleyoop to Williams, who punched home a one-handed dunk.

After the second half, Williams signaled to coach Lindberg, “That’s it, I’m not passing it anymore.” He had already snapped a few passes to his teammates who weren’t able to convert layups.

Every time the Knights worked the ball down the court, Williams would find an open space in three-point land and pop a jumper. In the fourth quarter alone, he scored 17 points.

The closest the Knights got to the Cougars in the second half was 65-50, but then CK’s Fryer dunked the ball with two hands to seal the game at 70-50 a few minutes later. Fryer had 16 in the game.

“The boys played fantastic,” said Central Kitsap coach Tim Fryer. “Sam’s all heart. He played well tonight. Brice hung in there pretty good tonight as well.”

On the court, Weller and Fryer were swamped by classmates who had flooded the floor.

“It was fun,” said Weller between hugs. “We’ve been excited since last year.”

All is not sad news for Bremerton’s side of things.

The Knights headed to Fort Meyers, Fla. on Thursday to play in the City of Palms Classic. Their first game was today and they’ll return on Dec. 24. The trip is all-expenses paid for the team and several chaperones.

CK is on a long hiatus until Jan. 7, 2004, when they host Port Angeles, Coach Fryer’s former team.

The Knights have to wait until Jan. 23, 2004 to get a chance for revenge against the Cougars in Silverdale. They last beat CK in January 51-40 on the road.

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