WAPATO - Grandview's boys basketball team saw a 16-point lead nearly evaporate before holding on for a 69-57 non-league win Saturday at Wapato.
"The game got interesting," Greyhound Coach Scott Parrish said of the fourth quarter, in which Wapato whittled its 16-point deficit to six with three minutes to play.
"Wapato changed up its defense in the fourth quarter and confused us," Parrish explained. "They extended a 2-3 zone and tried to trap our guards."
Grandview made just one bucket in the final stanza, relying on 11-of-13 sharpshooting at the charity stripe to fend off the Wolves. Top scorer James Vela accounted for four of the free throws on the way to a team-high 23 points.
"We called a couple of timeouts, got a bucket, then just made free throws from there," noted Parrish.
Following a slim 22-21 first quarter lead, Grandview grabbed control of the contest with a 34-19 run in the second and third stanzas.
Paced by Vela's 17 first-half points, the 'Hounds led 39-30 at the half, then pushed ahead 56-40 heading into the final eight minutes.
"We just did a good job of taking care of the ball until the fourth," noted Parrish. The key to Grandview's mid-game run, he added, was his team's guard play at stretching the floor and creating open drives to the hoop.
First-year varsity player Tim Schrank provided a spark at the post position with 14 points and a team-high seven rebounds. Guard C.J. Lopez contributed 10 points. "I'm real happy with Lopez. He's only a sophomore, but he handled Wapato's pressure with a lot of poise."
Wapato stayed in the game thanks to offensive rebounding, scoring more than a third of its points on 20 offensive boards.
"That's something we're going to have to address," Parrish said. "We can't continue to give teams that many second-chance points."
Grandview (1-0) travels to Prosser on Tuesday before hosting Sunnyside this Friday.
"It's always a good feeling to win that first game," Parrish said. "Hopefully the kids will keep working hard and getting better."