By Zach James
Assistant Sports Editor
The Camanche Indians have had their best week of the season.
Following a win over No. 2 Cascade at home on Tuesday night, the Indians returned to the floor Friday, and got another win, this time over Bellevue 61-50.
Camanche (5-9) never trailed in the game but did creak the door open for the Comets. Tanner Atkinson, however, quickly slammed it.
Bellevue (4-8) opened the third quarter on a 10-4 run after sitting in the locker room behind 36-24.
"I challenged them at halftime that we needed to take care of the basketball," Bellevue coach Tyler Daugherty said. "I thought we gave up too many offensive rebounds, too many second-chance points, but I thought they came out at first really well."
Then, Atkinson came to crash the Comets' party.
Camanche coach Josh Davis called a timeout to try to diffuse the Comets near-comeback. Out of the timeout, the Indians sent its guards outside of the perimeter and tried to create an open shot with fast and frequent passes.
"I wish I could put my finger on how we can play better in the third quarter," Davis said. "It's something we're going to have to continue to work on."
The ball came to Atkinson, where he fired off the ball from the top of the key, and it went in while he was fouled coming down, thus creating a four-point play.
Atkinson dropped one more 3-pointer in that stretch, creating a 7-0 run.
"Thankfully, Tanner got hot," Davis said. "Those shots got the crowd back in it, it livened up a flat atmosphere, and we were able to stun them right there."
Atkinson was humble about his game-changing shots.
"I just got the ball when my teammates fed it to me, and I looked up at the rim and went in, I guess," Atkinson, who would sink five 3-pointers on the night, said. "We got the momentum right back, and they're weren't able to catch up."
Atkinson hit the free throw as part of the four-point play to end up with 16 points.
"The guys do a good job of recognizing who needs to get the ball, and they found Tanner," Davis said. "That makes us a tough team to prepare for because we have so many weapons and guys who can get hot."
Dylan Busse also hit double-figure scoring for the Indians with 11 points.
"Busse and (Devon) Belk were both protecting the rim with blocked shots, finishing at the rim when they needed to, and changing the shot when they didn't get the block," Davis said. "Devon was also a huge energy booster when we needed him to be."
Davis talked with his team about responding well after the upset of Cascade.
"Our team needs to respond to wins just like when they lose games, too," he said. "Highlights don't win games, but defense does."
CAMANCHE 61, BELLEVUE 50
BELLEVUE (4-8) — Tyler Banowetz 6 9-12 21, Logan DeVries 1 1-2 4, Alex Hinke 1 0-2 2, Chase Putman 3 0-0 8, Colin Hager 1 2-2 4, Colby Mangler 1 0-0 2, Robert Schroeder 1 0-2 2, Jacob Rentz 3 0-0 7, Josh Sieverding 3 0-0 7. Totals 17 12-20 50.
CAMANCHE (5-9) — Blake Bialas 2 0-0 5, Brady Beal 4 1-3 9, Will Seeser 2 3-5 7, Seth Boysen 2 0-0 5, Devon Belk 2 3-8 7, Dylan Busse 4 3-5 11, Brody Lodge 0 1-2 1, Derek Harksen 0 0-0 0, Tanner Atkinson 5 1-1 16. Totals 18 12-26 61.
Bellevue 14 10 16 10 — 50
Camanche 14 20 13 12 — 61
3-point goals — Bellevue 4 (Putman 2, Sieverding, DeVries); Camanche 7 (Atkinson 5, Bialas, Boysen). Total fouls — Bellevue 20, Camanche 17. Fouled out — Mangler.