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Men's Basketball News

EVERETT – The Pirates split a road trip to Everett Sunday, the women winning 69-62 and the men falling in a thriller 72-69.

Next up for Peninsula are two home games during the College’s annual spirit week celebration, Pirate Pete’s Week. The Pirates host Olympic Wednesday and Bellevue Saturday. Game times on both nights are 5:00 for the women and 7:00 for the men.

BELLINGHAM – Peninsula College has not swept Whatcom since 2009, but the Pirates made the long trip to Whatcom County Wednesday night and returned with a pair of North Division victories.

The Peninsula women improved to 2-0 in conference play with a 77-68 win over the Orcas, while the men evened their record at 1-1 with a 62-56 nod.

The games were played at Meridian High School while Whatcom’s new gymnasium is being constructed.

PORT ANGELES – The Pirates, who defeated Edmonds 66-56 in the championship game of the West Region Crossover Tournament back on Dec. 21, were unable to repeat that performance in their conference opener Saturday, falling to the NWAC’s second-ranked Tritons 64-54.

Edmonds opened the game with a tenacious defensive presence that caught the Peninsula men off guard.

The Tritons also employed a defender who was tasked with not allowing Pirate sharp-shooter Ryley Callaghan any open looks at the basket – and it worked. The freshman guard who put up 21 on the Tritons a few weeks ago, was held to just four points, all of them coming from the free throw line.

The Pirate men fell behind early, trailing 35-21 at halftime, but coach Mitch Freeman and his staff rallied their team in the second half to get back in the game, eventually pulling to within one at 53-52 with 2:41 to play, fueling a big Pirate crowd, but the Tritons fought off that comeback with leading scorer Deonte Dixon fouling out to win by 10.

PORT ANGELES – The Peninsula College women and men open North Division play Saturday on “Seahawks Family Day” at the Pirate gym.

Fans will enjoy a special matinee performance against Edmonds with the women tipping off at 1 p.m. and the men following at 3 p.m. Barring overtime, fans will be home in time for the 5:15 NFL kickoff. Parents are encouraged to bring their children and admission will be waived for those 17-under. All fans are encouraged to wear Seahawks gear and to participate in football-related halftime contests.

“This promises to be a great day for sports fans,” said Director of Athletics Rick Ross. “Our teams are playing very well and we’re hoping the community will come out to support them in their conference opener – and still be able to join the rest of the Northwest around their TVs to cheer on the Hawks on Saturday evening.”

PORT ANGELES – The Peninsula College men’s basketball team held off Pierce 71-66 Tuesday to close out 2014 with four straight wins.

The Pirates wrapped up their non-conference schedule with a 7-5 record. They open North Division play Jan. 10 at home against Edmonds on “Seahawks Day.” Tip off for that women’s and men’s doubleheader has been moved to 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. and halftime contests are planned for fans wearing Seahawks gear.

In Tuesday’s final non-conference game, the Pirates fell behind early, but moved into the lead on four straight three-point bombs, two from Domach Domach and two from Ryley Callaghan.

The two teams traded baskets until Peninsula turned a 23-22 lead into a 34-22 lead with some defensive pressure, robust rebounding and two crowd-pleasing dunks from Jal Deng that led to a  71-66 lead at halftime.

The Raiders, however, would not go away, and closed to within three in the final minute, before the Pirates put the game away at the free throw line in the closing seconds to win by five.

Deng finished with 18 points to lead four Pirates in double figures. Callaghan, the 10th leading scorer in the Northwest Athletic Conference with a 19.4 average, added 17 points and four assists, Dixon, who is just ahead of Callaghan on the NWAC list of scoring leaders with a 19.5 average, was held to 12 points, and Domach also hit for 12.

The Pirates outrebounded their opponent for the fourth straight game, 40-33, led by nine from Malik Mayeux and eight from Jeremiah Hobbs.

OLYMPIA – It was a good weekend for Peninsula College head men’s basketball coach Mitch Freeman and his two families.

Coach Freeman was at his wife Nicole’s side for the birth of their second child last week as baby Gavin was welcomed into the family - and then he bolted to Olympia where his basketball family won the Northwest Athletic Conference West Division Crossover Tournament, held at South Puget Sound Community College.

It was Peninsula College’s first Crossover Tournament win since the 2011 Pirate men won the South Division Crossover in Salem, Oregon.

The Pirates defeated Edmonds 66-56 in Sunday’s championship, following wins over Walla Walla and Grays Harbor to claim the first-place trophy.

Freshman Deonte Dixon put up good numbers in all three games to win a spot on the All-Tournament Team, but it was a team effort on both sides of the ball, and outstanding team rebounding, that lifted the Pirates to three straight victories.

Peninsula improved to 6-5 in non-conference play with one game remaining, at home against Pierce (4-7) at 5:00 on Dec. 30. The Pirates will then prepare for their conference opener, Jan. 10 at home against Edmonds.

MOSES LAKE – The Peninsula men made the long trip to Eastern Washington last weekend to take on the Big Bend Vikings in a pair of back-to-back non-conference games.

The host Vikes proved too much for Peninsula, winning 81-67 Friday and then stopping the PC men again on Saturday, 86-58.

Next up for the Pirates is the West Region Crossover Tournament, set for Friday through Sunday at South Puget Sound in Olympia. The PC men (3-5) take on Walla Walla (3-4) at 5:00. 

PORT ANGELES – Home court advantage is something you can bank on.

Pirate fans enjoyed a pair of wins at the third annual First Federal Pirate Classic where the Peninsula men made their 2014-15 home debut with a thrilling 61-60 win over Centralia on Saturday, before returning to the home court Sunday where they sank the Clippers of South Puget Sound 70-59.

Peninsula 61, Centralia 60

A large crowd filed into the Pirate gym for the home opener Saturday when fans were treated to a hard-fought battle that saw the lead go back and forth all night.

Peninsula led 31-28 at halftime, but suffered some chilly shooting in the second half and could not shake the Trailblazers. The game came down to the wire. Centralia converted on a pair of free throws with eight seconds remaining to lead 60-59. The PC men inbounded to Ryley Callaghan, who sped up the court, drove through a pack of Blazer defenders and put up a running jump shot in the lane. The shot did not go down, but Deonte Dixon, in his first game as a Pirate, followed with a buzzer-beating tip-in to win the game and electrify the crowd.

Centralia held Peninsula’s leading scorer Ryley Callaghan to a season low 14 points, Dixon overcome some nerves and rust, hitting only 4/15 from the field and 2/9 from beyond the arc to also put up 14 points, Malik Mayeux hit for 12 points, including a 6/7 free throw effort, and Domach Domach added nine.

MOUNT VERNON – With four road games now under their belt, the Pirates are ready to make their home debut this weekend at the Pirate Classic, sponsored by First Federal.

“This will be a great opportunity for the home fans to come see this great college basketball team,” Director of Athletics Rick Ross said. “Coach Mitch Freeman and his staff have put together a team that this community will really enjoy watching.”

The Pirates (1-3) will open the annual four-team event at 7 p.m. Saturday against Centralia (1-2), following a 5 p.m. game between Skagit Valley (2-1) and South Puget Sound (0-2). Sunday’s schedule has Centralia vs. Skagit at 1:00 and Peninsula vs. South Puget Sound at 3:00.

Admission is $6 for adults, $4 for seniors (55), veterans and college students. Youth 17-under will be admitted free.

DES MOINES – The freshmen-dominated Peninsula Pirates got an eye-opening introduction to the Northwest Athletic Conference Friday, falling to the Thunderbirds at Highline 81-54.

The hosts built a seven-point halftime lead, 32-25, as both teams struggled offensively in the first half, but the Pirates could not stay with the T-birds in the second half, as Highline outscored Peninsula 49-29 in the final 20 minutes to win going away.

Ryley Callaghan, a 6-1 freshman guard from South Kitsap, led the Pirates with 17 points and six rebounds, Jonah Cook, Peninsula’s 6-9 red-shirt freshman post from Mount Vernon, added 11 points and a team-high eight boards, and Jeremiah Hobbs, a 6-4 freshman forward from Seattle, hit for 10 off the bench, adding six rebounds and four assists. Chris Reis, of Spokane, and Alex Ironside, of Pu’unui, Hawaii, both freshmen, each hit for seven.