Every opponent knows who’s likely to be high scorer for Lynden Christian, but no one knows who’s likely to grab any given rebound.
The Lyncs vividly demonstrated as Northwest Conference boys’ scoring champion Zach Roetcisoender tallied 29 points and four teammates hustled for seven rebounds apiece in LC’s 64-58 win over Bothell Cedar Park Christian on Wednesday, Feb. 10, in the semifinals of the Class 1A Northwest District Tournament.
“We’re not very big (no starter is taller than 6-foot-3), so we know we have to make a concerted effort for rebounds,” said coach Roger DeBoer, whose Lyncs (20-1) gave him his fourth 20-win season in seven years and clinched a Bi-District Tournament berth.
Point guard Josiah Meppelink, 3-point shooter Jake Poag, guard Nate Hielkema and energetic junior reserve Grant Rubbert provided that concerted effort with seven rebounds apiece in an up-tempo frenzy.
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We’re capable of playing a better game, but Cedar Park played a fantastic second half
Lynden Christian coach Roger DeBoer
Roetcisoender shot 7 for 10 in the first half for 18 points, giving the Lyncs a 39-21 halftime bulge. He endured a 1 for 5 third quarter but displayed exceptional poise with a 3 for 3 fourth quarter as LC fended off a 37-25 second-half run by Cedar Park (10-12), which finished with nine 3-point baskets.
“We’re recognizing that we have to play better,” De Boer said, “although you have to credit Cedar Park.”
9 Three-pointers by Cedar Park’s six long-range shooters, with six in the second half.
Roetcisoender agreed: “We definitely should have played better.”
The Lyncs will play for the district title Saturday, Feb. 13, at 7:30 p.m. at Mount Vernon against fellow No. 1 seed King’s (18-3), a 73-34 winner over Mount Baker on Wednesday. Baker will host Nooksack Valley on Friday in a loser-out game.
IT WAS OVER WHEN …
… Meppelink, who had 12 points, made three free throws in the final 27 seconds and -- following a 3-pointer by Cedar Park’s Scott Kragerud -- Roetcisoender immediately made two free throws with five seconds left for the game’s final points.
Rubbert was the only scorer among the reserves, collecting 9 points, seven rebounds and two steals.
“Grant brings us that kind of energy and effort night in and night out,” DeBoer said.
PLAY OF THE NIGHT
After a 3 by Zach Fisk to slice LC’s lead to 57-53 with one minute left, Roetcisoender scored on a daring drive with 40 seconds left for what was ultimately the game-winning basket.
Lynden Christian 64, Cedar Park Christian 58
Bothell Cedar Park Christian: George Reidy 12, Connor Renstrom 12, Zach Fisk 10, Jaden Sheffey 9, Drew McLaurin 5, Scott Kragerud 6, Andrei Leonardi 4. Totals: 22-58 5-7 58.
Lynden Christian: Zach Roetcisoender 29, Josiah Meppelink 12, Lucas Roetcisoender 2, Jake Poag 8, Nate Hielkema 4, Grant Rubbert 9, Tanner Bouma 0, George De Jong 0, Andrew Vander Mey 0. Totals: 20-51 22-31 64.