Heritage topples rival Lummi

TULALIP — The Tulalip Heritage basketball team led 16-7 by the end of the first quarter, but the Hawks were too wise to be excited.

The visiting Lummi team, first place and undefeated in Northwest 1B basketball, was too good to be beaten that easily.

And sure enough, with patience and consistent shooting, the Blackhawks knotted the game at 25-25 going into halftime as Lummi guard Dustin Tom hit the tying shot seconds before the buzzer.

But the Hawks, playing Jan. 10 in a rescheduled game, knew what was on the line. Heritage, playing on their home court the night the gym was dedicated in an emotional ceremony to a tribal elder, was playing for pride.

“We were down in leagues two games and this is our biggest rival,” said junior guard Shawn Comenote after the game.

A couple of brief lead changes in Lummi’s favor in the third quarter weren’t enough to dim the Hawks’ hopes for victory. Trailing 31-29, Comenote hit a field goal and a pair of free throws back to back to give Tulalip a lead they would not cede the rest of the game as they went on to defeat the Blawkhawks 63-46.

Junior guard Keith Davis hit a key one and one at the end of the third quarter to give Tulalip a four-point lead going into the fourth quarter and Davis combined with Comenote for 17 fourth-quarter points as Heritage pulled away and handed Lummi their first defeat of the season and first at the hands of Heritage since 2006-07 when the Hawks went all the way to the state championship game.

Three treys from Comenote answered Lummi guard David James’ effort and had Lummi shot the three a little better, the game might have had a different result.

“We hit some big shots down the stretch that really put us over the top,” Tulalip coach Jamie Sluys said, referring to three treys in the fourth quarter, two by Comenote and one by Davis.

Comenote had a game-high 21 points while Davis’ 16 matched Lummi’s top scorer, Gale Jefferson. Senior Kurtis Johnson and junior forward James WhiteBear each had 10 points in the win.

With the win, the Hawks tighten their grasp on second place, still a game behind Lummi and just ahead of North Sound Christian, who dealt the boys their only losses so far this season.

“I think we’re back,” Sluys added. “This puts us in the top echelon on the league.”

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