With Peninsula junior Belle Frazier sitting on the bench after picking up her second foul in the first quarter, the Seahawks were trailing at South Kitsap on Dec. 20 and the offense looked disjointed.
So coach Mike Schick put Frazier back into the game in the second quarter, despite the early foul trouble.
“I had a lot of fouls this game that shouldn’t have been called so I had to stay off them,” Frazier said. “I just played smarter after that.”
The decision to put Frazier back into the game paid dividends. Peninsula (6-1 overall, 3-1 SSC 3A) outscored South Kitsap (2-7 overall, 1-5 SPSL 4A) 18 to 7 in the second quarter, as Frazier brought new energy into the game immediately. Peninsula never looked back, toppling South Kitsap, 49-31.
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Frazier finished with 19 points.
It was a welcome bounceback win for the Seahawks, after losing 60-30 five days earlier to crosstown rival Gig Harbor.
“I think we were ready for another game,” Frazier said. “That was a rough loss.”
It was a game in which Frazier admitted she probably tried to do too much herself. Against South Kitsap, Frazier looked to share the ball more.
“I felt like I forced a lot of shots (against Gig Harbor),” Frazier said. “This game, I made sure to try to get the ball to other players. Piper (Bauer) came in and was great.”
Bauer, a freshman, has been one of the season’s most positive surprises for the Seahawks. She scored 10 against South Kitsap, showing poise and skill beyond her years.
“I’m just trying to get open shots for my teammates, have them talk more and just play defense,” Bauer said.
Holding South Kitsap to just 31 points? That’s music to the ears of Schick, who has brought his high-pressure, trapping defense to Peninsula.
“The defense has been really good,” Bauer said. “We force a lot of turnovers from the other team because they don’t know what to do.”
And it’s been a benefit for Frazier as well, allowing her to get easy points in transition off turnovers.
“It’s been huge,” Frazier said. “We’ve been able to get a lot of fast breaks off it. It helps because I have long arms so I can play up top. That’s fun.”
Aside from the loss to Gig Harbor, Peninsula has been flawless, entering the break with a 6-1 overall record.
“We just have to work hard in practice, keep pushing each other,” Bauer said.