Mules rebound after loss to Ilwaco

Coach Garrett praises 'cultural shift' on team


December 14, 2023

Todd Wilson

At 5'8", Mule senior Grant Wilson wasn't about to let a nine inch height difference with this 6'5" Mount Vernon Christian cager keep him from getting the rebound.

The Wahkiakum Mules boys basketball team split games again this week adding another easy win to their record, but also a tough last minute loss.

On Friday, the Mules faced Mount Vernon Christian at home and despite struggles with shooting all four quarters, the team had little trouble with the Hurricanes and won 50-35.

"I thought Grant [Wilson] and Nathan [Garrett] did a great job with their roles," Coach Rob Garrett said, praising both of them for rebounding. "Grant led us with eight rebounds, which is just awesome. I think the kid is 5'8" on a good day. Grant has just been getting up and going after boards, which is huge. We're not very good at rebounding, so to have a kid like that step up and be willing to do anything, I thought was a huge success. We talked about that a lot this summer, that rebounding was a role that people needed to buy into and he's definitely done that, especially early in the season. That's a great early sign."

Garrett didn't have too much to say about the game, but he remarked on the cultural shift he is seeing in his team, as they start to embody the qualities he hopes to instill.

"The way we react to calls, how are we going to present ourselves if my shot is not falling, what kind of teammate am I going to be," Garrett said. "I think we've come a long way from our first practice this summer to where we are at now. I think the game becomes more fun as you learn how to play the game a different way. And it's not only more fun to play and be a part of, it's more fun to watch as a fan. It's much easier to support kids who are being great kids. That's a big thing we talk about. I've been really proud of the guys so far."

Zakk Carlson and Kyler Sause led Mule scoring with 15 points apiece. Jacob Johnson added six points and six assists. Grant Wilson had five points. Parker Leitz scored three points. Cooper Carlson, Gage Robinson and Nathan Garrett chipped in two each.

MVC 9 5 15 6 35

Mules 9 10 21 10 50

On Tuesday, the Mules hosted Adna in their first conference game of the season. Wahkiakum led by as much as 10 points at one point, but Adna came back to win by two, 69-67.

Todd Wilson

Wahkiakum's Kyler Sause picks up two in the Mules' 50-35 win against Mount Vernon Christian on Friday.

"Unfortunately, we came up on the wrong side of an exciting game tonight though the guys did a lot of positive things," Garrett said. "We got to the rim better than we have so far this season and we rebounded well for most of the game. We have to do a better job with our calmness and decision making down the stretch."

"It's a great opportunity for us to learn from and make adjustments so we are winning those games late in the season," he added. Sause led scoring with 26 points. He also had seven rebounds and four assists. Z. Carlson added 22 points and four assists. Leitz had nine points. Jayden Stoddard and C. Carlson contributed three points each. Johnson had two points and five assists. Garrett scored two points.

Adna 20 9 17 23 69

Mules 20 12 18 17 67

The Mules are on the road this week with more conference games In Winlock on Thursday (today) and Rainier on Tuesday. They host Onalaska next Thursday before going on Christmas break.


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