ROYAL — It was a weird little three-game swing going into the holiday break for the Royal boys basketball team.
The Knights (4-3, 1-1 SCAC East) looked a lot like a cork bobbing in the ocean the past week. On the good side, they broke the surface with Saturday’s 80-31 win over Goldendale in a SCAC crossover game to go into the break with more wins than losses. On the bobbing down side, Royal scored single digits in three of the four quarters in a SCAC beat down by Zillah on Friday night. Royal trailed 60-34 after three quarters and lost 82-34 to the high-flying Leopards, who scored 45 points in the second half. Royal was back to the surface early last week with a 65-53 win over Warden.
So all things considered, it’s time to turn loose the dogs when they come out of the short-but-sweet break.
“We’ve had some inconsistencies and have some things to fix. But what I really like about the way we’re playing right now, is how our young guys are playing,” coach Ray Valle said. “They’re not just coming off the bench and holding the line. They’re coming in and playing like they could start for half the teams in our league.”
Valle got a bonzer night from freshman Luke Bergeson Saturday night against the Timberwolves (4-5, 1-2 SCAC West). The 5-foot-7 guard had 18 of his 20 points from beyond the arc for the Knights, who led 68-26 after three quarters when Caleb Christensen knocked down a 23-foot buzzer beater to end the quarter.
Bergeson had six treys en route to a game-high 20 points. Owen Ellis was money from the perimeter as well. The 6-2 senior hit four 3-pointers on his way to 16 points. Derek Bergeson and Caleb Christensen added 11 and 10 points, respectively.
Royal 65, Warden 53
WARDEN — The thing about Royal vs. Warden, it doesn’t matter if it’s your place or theirs or down at the school yard on the steel-net hoops, both teams tend to get after it.
“It’s always good beating Warden,” said Royal senior Sawyer Jenks after Tuesday night’s 65-53 win in Warden.
Royal finished with a 11-4 run with a little defense in the end to win its first SCAC East win of the season.
“I thought our press got to them a little bit tonight. We got some steals off of it and it threw them out of their rhythm,” said Royal senior Owen Ellis, who finished with 23 points, including nine from beyond the arc. Jenks finished up with 17 points and eight rebounds for the Knights, who led by 12 at the intermission.