Fike’s 3rd-quarter run costs Washington

Published 1:20 am Friday, November 18, 2016

Washington fought hard in its home opener against Fike on Thursday. The Pam Pack dropped its first game of the year, 76-56, at Northern Nash the day before. It had a victory in reach coming out of halftime, but the visiting Demons went on a 15-0 run and never looked back as Washington lost, 77-58.

Tied 35-35 in the third quarter, Fike’s Donovan Liles jumpstarted the spree with a 3-pointer. Washington faced a double-digit deficit before long, and coach Steve Flowers called a timeout.

“I just called timeout to relax,” he said. “I think (Wednesday) we spent a lot of energy. I think we were just running out of gas. That’s what it looked like.”

Liles hit a layup in transition after the timeout. Not to be outdone, Samson Strickland, who torched the Pam Pack for 28 points, sank a layup of his own through contact and converted on the subsequent free throw.

With that, Fike took a 50-33 lead. A nice dish from Sharwan Staton gave Larry Lee an easy basket. Strickland missed a dunk on the other end, and Malik Bell got a basket in transition, but the quick spurt hardly put a dent in the Pam Pack’s deficit.


The visitors stormed out of the gate when Liles got a layup just four seconds into the game. Tyshaud Lucas nailed a shot from behind the arc to push Fike’s early lead to 5-0, but Washington was able to bounce back. Staton and Nazzir Hardy got buckets in transition, and Harvey McCullough’s put-back layup put the Pam Pack ahead, 6-5.

The two sides finished the first eight minutes tied at 15 apiece. Fike built a 25-17 lead in the second, but Washington didn’t let the game get out of hand. Staton assisted on a transition layup by Suae Poe, and sank a corner 3 to make it a one-possession game.

Fike went into halftime with a marginal 31-29 lead, but it was apparent in the third period that Washington had run out of steam after playing the night before.


The Pam Pack had a few spurts in the fourth quarter. Staton converted on a pair of chances at the free-throw line and made a shot from behind the arc, but Washington couldn’t get any closer than 10. He added two more treys late in the game, but Strickland and the Demons didn’t let the Pam Pack close the gap.

Flowers was able to identify areas of concern in Washington’s first two games. He’s hoping to see improvement once he has a chance to address them in practice.

““We had a lot of things wrong (on Wednesday) that we didn’t have a chance to fix,” Flowers said. “(Wednesday) we had 27 turnovers. We cut them down a little bit, but if you don’t have a chance to work on this stuff, you can talk about it, but you’ve got to practice it.”

One improvement he did see from game to game was not playing from behind the entire time.

“The big thing for us was we were down 18 the whole game (at Northern Nash),” Flowers said. “We played hard, used up a lot of energy, but it wasn’t there (Thursday).”

Washington will continue searching for its first win Monday when it hosts Jones Senior.