T-Birds struggle as playoffs approach
By Donnie Williams - Staff Reporter
The Highline men's basketball team fell to fifth place in the Western Conference with its loss against Centralia, 75-71, last Wednesday.
This is the second loss in a row for the Thunderbirds, and it's becoming more and more clear what team needs to work on to make the playoffs.
For the second time in a row the Thunderbirds were out-rebounded (41-36). "Rebounding starts with desire," said Coach Che Dawson in response to the men's performance on the glass.
In addition, starting center Desmond Hudson wasn't completely over the ankle sprain he acquired during the Green River game Saturday, Jan. 20.
"Desmond should be 100 percent for our next game," Coach Dawson said.
Although Hudson wasn't at full power, he still got five rebounds in Wednesday's loss; the second most on Highline's side.
Against Centralia David Harris had another standout game, leading the team in almost every area with 23 points, six rebounds, two assists, three steals, and two blocks.
It wasn't enough for the win though as the Thunderbirds couldn't take advantage of all the opportunities they were given as they only shot 40.8 percent from the field; the lowest they have shot since Green River in mid-January. They also only shot a season low 25.7 percent from behind the three-point-line.
Coby Rothwell was another player Highline had to rely on in the Centralia game. Rothwell had 15 points, four rebounds, an assist, and a steal.
The Thunderbirds need to turn things around now if they want to make the playoffs this year. There are only seven conference games left before the playoffs, and they must move up to fourth place to be eligible.
The team met with South Puget Sound in Lacey last night, but results were not available at press time.
The Thunderbirds next see action at 2 p.m. at home against the Tacoma Titans.