Everett was back at it on Wednesday night, again on the road traveling to Des Moines for a matchup against 3-1 Highline College. Both teams entered the contest coming off of wins, the Trojans in a 123-89 drubbing over Yakima Valley and the Thunderbirds in a defensive battle in which they came out on top of Olympic College 70-67.
EvCC jumped out to an early 7 point lead over Highline within the first four minutes of the game, but by the 11 minute mark the score was tied at 22. From there, the Thunderbirds regained the lead, stretching it out to as many as 11 with two minutes to go in the first half. The Trojans would go on a run to pull within six before the halftime buzzer. At the break, the bulk of the Trojan offense came from Markeith Brown Jr. and Bobby Martin combining for 23 of Everett's 43 first half points.
Highline built their largest lead of the game at 13 with a hot start after just three minutes of play into the second half, but the high power offense of the Trojans would not go away quietly as evident in every game this season. Just five minutes later EvCC regained the lead at 63-62. More back and forth between these two teams would ensue in a game that featured four ties and 7 lead changes. With just over 40 seconds to go, Phalon Maddox drove the lane and put up a running floater to put the Trojans on top 88-86. Highline responded with a go-ahead 3 pointer moments later with under 30 seconds remaining. After a Highline timeout, the Thunderbirds came out in a 2-3 zone. Jon Parker had a 3 point look from the corner that missed just off the side of the rim. A Trojan foul on the rebound would lead to two Highline free throws, and the Thunderbirds held on for the 91-88 win.
Markeith Brown Jr. lead all scorers with 24 and three other Trojans would score in double figures, including Magnus Jespersen who racked up 16 rebounds and 16 points to record his 3rd double double of the season. While the rebounding margin was even, a major factor in the outcome of this game was Highlines 38 points inside the paint. Everett's interior defense will look to improve with six more non-conference games remaining before North Region play begins in January.
The Trojans return home December 10th for a match up with 6-0, undefeated Clackamas Community College out of the South Region. Tip off is set for 5pm.