For the first time this season, Lynden Christian boys’ basketball coach Vic Wolffis got to see how his team responded late in a close game.
Wolffis liked what he saw, even if the Lyncs ended up on the short end of 63-58 score Saturday against visiting Blaine in a Northwest Conference game. Connor Oldham scored 31 points and Nate Tewalt had 24 to lead the Borderites to victory.
“We’re definitely seeing improvement,” Wolffis said of his team in a phone interview. “Some of the things we’ve been working on are definitely getting better, even though we are still making some of the same mistakes in other areas. Definitely, our competitiveness has picked up. It was good to be in this game at the end. I saw the desire from them out there tonight.”
Desire, unfortunately for the Lyncs, was not enough to claim their first win of the season. Lynden Christian (0-8, 0-3 NWC) trailed by two with about 1 1/2 minutes to play, Wolffis said, but a turnover hurt their chances of coming back. Blaine (3-6, 1-0) hit a pair of free throws on the ensuing possession to begin putting the game away.
Oldham was 11 for 15 from the free-throw line, while Tewalt was 14 of 17 from the line.Turnovers also hurt the Lyncs in the second quarter, when they mishandled the ball on seven of 14 possessions. The Borderites held Lynden Christian without a field goal on the other seven possessions and outscored the Lyncs 18-6 in the period.
Lynden Christian was led by 19 points from Andrew Ryan and 17 from Josh Libolt, who shot 8 of 11 from the field and led LC with five rebounds.