MEN’S BASKETBALL CONTINUES UNDEFEATED RUN
The Bellevue men's basketball team looked to continue their undefeated start to the season at the North Seattle Community College Crossover tournament Dec. 16-18. The eight-team tournament field included two ranked teams and two teams just outside of the Alaska Airlines Coaches Poll. Bellevue, ranked second in the latest poll, took on the Clackamas Community College Cougars for the second time in a week to open the tourney. Bellevue was able to open a 15 point lead on the Cougars with seven minutes to go in the second half. Clackamas stormed back in the final minutes cutting the Bulldog lead to just three points with less than a minute to play. In the end, Bellevue was able to hold on and finished with an 86-81 victory. Freshmen Keaton Hayenga led the Bulldogs with 24 points and 10 rebounds. Sophomore Eric Turner added 11 points. Sophomore Dallas Searles scored nine points and did an excellent job running the Bulldog offense. Freshman Alec Wilson scored all nine of his points in a two minute span on three straight three-point shots. Sophomore Rex Nelson scored 12 points and added six rebounds.
In the semifinals of the tournament on Saturday, Dec. 17, Bellevue faced the Yaks of Yakima Valley College. Bellevue opened an early 20-point lead against the Yaks, but Yakima refused to go away, eventually cutting the lead to five points in the second half. Yakima forced the Bulldogs into 31 turnovers which led to the comeback. Bellevue held Yakima to 35% shooting but gave up 15 offensive rebounds. In the end the Bulldogs were able to finish their free throws and come away with a win. The final score was 81-76. Nelson led the Bulldogs with 24 points and 12 rebounds. Turner scored in double figures again with 12 points. Jon Humphrie scored 12 points and added 8 rebounds. Andrew Squiers scored 12 points, grabbed eight rebounds, and handed out six assists.
Bellevue moved onto the championship game on Sunday against 6th ranked Walla Walla Community College. Bellevue finally put together a complete performance leading the game from start to finish. The Bulldogs held Walla Walla to just 21 points in the first half giving them a 19 point lead. Bellevue played their most complete game of the season finishing with a big 88-50 championship victory. Every Bulldog player scored in the game led by Hayenga with 28 points. Hayenga and sophomore Laszlo Miller led the team with nine rebounds each. Nelson and Turner each scored 10 and 12 points, respectively. Humphrie added 17 points.
Keaton Hayenga was named to the All-Tournament team and Rex Nelson was the MVP of the tournament. The Bulldogs ran their record to 8-0, one of only two teams currently undefeated in the NWAACC.
Bellevue plays one more game in 2011 against crosstown rival Highline Community College. The game will be played at the ShoWare Center in Kent on December 22, at 8 p.m.
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