By JOEL WILLITS
Bellevue Reporter Former Sports Writer March 2, 2009 · 9:59 AM Comments
Newport's Randi Boseman was one of three Knights to give Newport a boost off the bench. The junior had five steals, including this one off Inglemoor's Alex Nelson. / Fumiko Yarita/Belleuve Reporter
Their star player sick and struggling to find her shot in a loser-out game, the Newport Knights looked towards their bench.
Fortunately for the Knights, the bench answered the call.
Chanel Cambronero, Caitlin Bennett and Randi Boseman came in as subs to score a combined 30 points, helping Newport knock off Inglemoor 54-38 in a loser-out game in the Sea-King 4A District Tournament.
With Betsy Kingma struggling from the flu, the trio of Knights coming off the bench provided Newport with enough firepower to reach a seeding game against Garfield Thursday.
"I feel like that's our strength, we play eight kids pretty regularly," said Newport coach Travis Whitaker about his bench. "Those kids all work really hard."
While Kingma, who had been averaging nearly 17 points per game, was limited to eight points on 1-for-16 shooting (she scored six points from the free throw line), 5-foot-4 sophomore guard Cambronero scored a game-high 18 to boost Newport, helping the Knights (16-7) to a 20-point fourth quarter.
"Since we had some sick players on the team, we all needed to step it up," said Cambronero, who, along with Bennett and Kingma, was among the players ill for Tuesday's game. "We all needed to bring energy to the team and carry the ones that were sick."
Newport built a 28-20 lead late in the second quarter before Inglemoor's Brittany Gardner hit a 35-foot desperation shot at the buzzer to pull the Vikings (16-7) to within five.
But Newport clamped down in the second half, aided by the defensive play of Boseman off the bench. The junior guard had five steals to go along with her eight points.
"She is easily our best on-ball defender," Whitaker said. "She's gotten a bit of a reputation around the league and opposing point guards don't like to see her out there."
Inglemoor was limited to only three field goals in the second half, all by 6-foot senior forward Lynsey Sandum, who scored 12 points.
"I think the girls had it in their mind that defense was what was going to get the win tonight," Whitaker said.
Alex Nelson led the Vikings with 13 points.
The winner of Thursday's game, which was unavailable at Reporter deadline, will host the Southwest Districts No.2 seed in a winner-to-state game today, while the loser would travel to the Vancouver area to take on the No. 1 seed for a shot at a state berth.