The Lumberjack boys basketball team has yet to allow an opponent past 50 points.
St. Maries’ has given up an average of 33 points per game in its first five, but the definitive defensive tests are still coming.
After hosting Post Falls JV Wednesday, the Lumberjacks will face Kellogg, Lapwai, Kellogg again, Grangeville and finally Timberlake to finish a stretch of six games in 13 days.
In its last five meetings with Kellogg, St. Maries is 2-3 against its 3A rivals, losing both matchups last season (37-57, 50-52) and winning two of three the season before (58-37, 65-57, 45-51).
Lapwai started its season the same as St. Maries, winning its first five before falling to 4A Lakeland and 1AD2 Garden Valley. The Wildcats were ranked first in the 1AD1 classification going into the new year.
“That’ll be three really good games next week,” Coach Bryan Chase said. “Defensively I like what I’ve seen so far. When you go back and watch film there are still things we need to improve on in the coming weeks here, and we’ll really see where we need to get better when we play some of those teams coming up.”
The Jacks played their lone game last week Jan. 2 at Sandpoint and held the Bulldogs to 12 points in the first half of a 57-26 win.
“We had three guys in double figures, and that was nice to see,” Coach Chase said. “I thought Colby (Renner) did a good job of getting to the rim and hitting his free throws, and Eli (Gibson) did a nice job setting up our offense and getting guys where they needed to be.”
Tristan Nelson scored nine of his 11 in the first quarter as his team took a 16-7 lead into the second frame.
“He sparked us and got us going in that first quarter,” Coach Chase said.
Upcoming: St. Maries (5-0) hosts Post Falls JV Wednesday for a 7 p.m. tipoff and plays at Kellogg (2-1, 1-0 IML) Saturday, tipping off at 3 p.m. The team returns home Monday, Jan. 11 for a 7 p.m. game with Lapwai (5-2).
St. Maries 57, Sandpoint 26
SM 16 14 18 9 57
SAND 7 5 6 8 26
Gibson – 14 pts., 5 st.; Nelson – 11 pts., 5 reb., 3 st.; Becktel – 7 pts., 5 reb., 3 st.; C. Renner – 10 pts.; Stancil – 6 pts.; Sands – 5 pts.; Hill – 2 pts.; Wicks – 1 pt.; T. Renner – 1 pt.