The Richland boys basketball team has been scoring a lot of points and having fun doing it.
Whats not so fun for Bombers coach Earl Streufert is watching his team take a powder on defense.
We gave up 75 one night, 92 the other night. I dont recall ever giving up 167 points on successive nights, Streufert said. If were making our shots, our best defense is a good offense.
Spoken like a guy who just gave up 167 points.
Even though the longtime Bombers coach might groan about points allowed, his team seems to have established an offensive pace with which it is comfortable.
Streufert is more than happy with his players willingness to distribute the wealth.
Im really pleased with our unselfishness. Weve got a lot of guys who can score, and theyre trying to find open guys, Streufert said a night after freshman guard Steven Beo scored a career-high
28 points in a road win at Walla Walla. Nathan (Streufert) had a breakout game one night, and Payton Radliff scored 26 in that same game. Jacob DeVries starts a lot of games hitting three or four 3s. Hes got to be shooting like 70 percent (from the arc).
Richland (8-3, 5-1) is averaging 70 points a game, more than six points ahead of Hanford (63.8), and despite giving up more than 62 points a game the most by any Richland team since Streufert took over in 2000 the Bombers still lead the Mid-Columbia Conference in point differential at plus-7.46.
Nate Streufert has set the tone for the offense, leading the team in scoring, but Beo, DeVries and Radliff can step up on any given night.
(Beo) texted me after the Kennewick game (a 97-92 Richland win Jan. 4) and asked me how early the gym would be open Saturday morning, coach Streufert said. I told him around 6:30-7 a.m. He told me he wanted to get a bunch of shots up. He came out that night (in Walla Walla) and shot 9-of-14 with 4-of-7 3s.
The ones he missed were good shots. He was dialed in pretty good.
MCC point differential
Team Scored Allowed Diff
Richland 70 62.54 +7.46
Walla Walla 55.1 49.6 +5.5
Hanford 63.8 59 +4.8
Kamiakin 49.5 45 +4.5
Southridge 57.9 56.7 +1.2
Kennewick 58.3 62.75 -4.45
Pasco 58.4 66.7 -8.3
Chiawana 48.9 58.36 -9.46
Finding his groove at Southridge: D.J. Traver, who took the reins after Jason DeVere resigned after eight seasons as the Suns coach, is finding his rhythm at Southridge. The River View graduate and former Columbia (Burbank) coach won three of his first four games with the Suns.
Southridge hit a cold streak once league play began, losing its first four Mid-Columbia Conference games, but the Suns have won two in a row heading into tonights game at Richland (7:30 p.m., Art Dawald Gym).
Im enjoying it here. Its fun to be in a new league, Traver said. Im getting some help from some former players.
Another bonus is that Traver finally gets to work with his father, Dennis, a former River View assistant under Roger Sonderland.
Hes been at River View since 1994, D.J. said. Its fun to work with my dad. Hes always been there to support me.
Sunnyside coach takes leave of absence: Grizzlies coach Ron Rowe will step aside for the remainder of this season after health issues forced a hospital visit Thursday, Jan. 3.
Sunnyside assistant coach Ruben Fernandez will take over as interim head coach. Its unknown whether Rowe will be able to return next season, and his absence definitely was felt during a 68-21 home loss to Eastmont the day after he was hospitalized.
Sunnyside athletic director Bill Daley chose not to comment on the specific nature of Rowes condition, but he said there was a lot of concern from Grizzlies players, coaches and staff.
I think it was a struggle on Friday. (The news) came down so quickly, Daley said. We didnt play well Friday, which was uncharacteristic of the boys program. But we have very good people leading our kids and our program. Theyre going to work hard to keep things moving forward.
Rowe coached at Sunnyside for five seasons from 1988-92 and returned in 2008.