Women's basketball: Brakes, Larson shine in record-breaking night


Wednesday night was magical for the Pirates.

In a must-win game, the Pirates avenged a Jan. 16 loss at Everett by overcoming a slow start and blowing by the Trojans for an 87-73 victory – and they did it in record fashion.

Sophomore post Taylor Larson broke her own single game scoring record with 41 points, sophomore point guard Karli Brakes broke her own single game assist record with 15, and the Pirates moved into sole possession of fourth place in the North Division.

The top four teams will advance to the NWAACC Basketball Championship Tournament, set for March 2-5 at the Toyota Center in Kennewick. The win lifts Peninsula (7-4 in conference play, 12-9 overall) one game ahead of Everett. Skagit Valley, Whatcom and Bellevue are knotted in first place with 9-2 conference records. 

The Pirates host Olympic on Saturday, travel to Shoreline on Wednesday and then return home for their “sophomore night” game against Bellevue on Feb. 23 to wrap up regular season play. 

In short, they control their own destiny.

In Wednesday’s win, Abby Jones’ effort on both ends of the floor helped the Pirates rally from behind to take a 39-32 halftime lead and it was “Brakes to Larson” for 40 minutes, as the two Juneau, Alaska, products connected over and over throughout the record-breaking night.

Larson was extremely efficient, hitting 18-of-21 from the floor and 5-of-5 from the free throw line to smash her own Peninsula single game scoring record of 35, set Jan. 25, 2012, against Olympic. 

She also padded her all-time Peninsula career scoring record, previously held by Courtney Bridges, who scored 794 points in 1998-2000. Larson is now at 879 with three regular season games remaining.

Brakes improved on her own single game assist record of 14, set Feb. 11 against Edmonds, with 15 on Wednesday. She also broke the Peninsula all-time assist record, previously owned by Venika Dickerson, who dished out 254 assists from 1999-2001. Brakes is now at 280 assists.

Also playing well for the Pirates was Jasmine Yarde, who had 14 points, five rebounds, five assists and six steals, Jones, who finished with 10 points, nine boards and five assists, and Jonica Durbin, who had eight points, six rebounds and two blocked shots.
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