Rainier Beach Wins State, Clinches Berth to NY for National Title

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Saturday March 8th 2014 3A Boys Basketball
Tacoma Dome 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Eastside Catholic 11 15 7 12 45
Rainier Beach 11 10 14 12 47

Rainier Beach Wins State, Clinches Berth to NY for National Title
By Colin Caruso

-In this their fourth meeting on the season, the undefeated Rainier Beach Vikings squared off with the Eastside Catholic Crusaders for the 3A boys state title. Only one of the three previous games was close, the Metro final which resulted in a 68-65 Beach win.

Eastside started the game on a 7-0 run, with four points coming from junior Matisse Thybulle. His length gave the Vikings issues all evening. Beach needed an answer and it came in the form of David Crisp, who scored the Vikings first eight points. Unfortunately for the Vikings, Crisp picked up his third foul in the first quarter and was forced to sit the remainder of the half. The teams were tied at 11 going into the second.

With Crisp on the bench for the Vikings, the Crusaders gathered the momentum in the second quarter. Mandrell Worthy led all scorers in the first half with 14 points, and the Crusaders took a 26-21 lead into halftime.

Rainier Beach was out of the locker room five minutes before the Crusaders, sitting on the bench and patiently waiting to start their halftime shooting. Whatever coach Bethea mentioned to them in their brief halftime session worked; they started the half on a 10-3 run. Eastside struggled offensively in the third, resorting to one on one offense, not running sets, and not battling for offensive rebounds. The Vikings took a two point lead into
the fourth.

The two point lead turned into a four point deficit for the Vikings in less than two minutes in the beginning of the final quarter. A quick 6-0 run put the Crusaders on top and brought their crowd back in the game. But Shaqquan Aaron wouldn’t let the Vikings go quietly. He scored six straight to put the Vikings back up by two. A Mandrell Worthy jumper for the Crusaders tied the game at 43 with less than two minutes remaining. Djuan Piper for the Vikings converted a minute later on a dribble drive, answered by Thybulle with his own dribble drive with 40 seconds remaining. Piper answered the call again for the Vikings, hitting a mid-range jumper with 5.1 seconds on the clock.

After the made basket, the Crusaders inbounded from their own baseline. Worthy was stripped of the ball and the Vikings picked it up as the clock struck 0:00, winning their third state title in a row. Rainier Beach will take a couple of weeks off then travel to New York to play for the national title. Good luck to the Vikings!

Top Performers:
Eastside Catholic
Mandrell Worthy – 21 points, 5 rebounds
Ian Christie – 1 point, 17 rebounds

Rainier Beach
Shaqquan Aaron – 22 points, 7 rebounds, 2 steals
Elijah Foster – 6 points, 12 rebounds

Gonzaga Prep Comes Back from 12 down to Win State Title

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Saturday March 8th 2014 4A Girls Basketball
Tacoma Dome 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Gonzaga Prep 17 10 15 11 53
Mount Rainier 16 18 13 4 51

Gonzaga Prep Comes Back from 12 down to Win State Title
By Colin Caruso

The Tacoma Dome was rocking for the 4A girls state final between the one loss Gonzaga Prep Bullpups and the Mount Rainier Rams. Mount Rainier is led by Brittany McPhee, a former Gatorade state player of the year and one of the states finest players.

The first half showed a lot of McPhee, who worked hard to get her shots and scored a half high 17 points. Hannah Caudill for the Bullpups led her team with 11 points in the first, and kept them within striking distance for the second half. Mount Rainier took a seven point lead, 34-27 into the locker room.

McPhee kept up her scoring in the third quarter. She added nine more in the frame and Mount Rainier began to pull away from the Bullpups, ahead by ten points with three minutes remaining. But Gonzaga Prep put together a much needed 6-0 run to cut the lead back down to four. The Rams led by five, 47-42 going into the fourth.

Early in the fourth belonged to the Bullpups. Otiona Gildon converted on back to back pick and roll layups, trimming the lead to just one with four minutes remaining. With two minutes of no scoring, Gildon converted on two more layups, going on a personal 8-0 run and putting the Bullpups up by three with under a minute to play.

Kaiti Freeberg finally ended the Rams drought, converting on a layup with 17.5 seconds on the clock. Still trailing by one, the Rams were forced to foul to put the Bullpups on the line. Unfortunately they only committed three team fouls and there was less than one minute remaining. So when they finally got to a bonus situation, there were just three seconds on the clock. Caudill converted on one of two from the line for the Pups and Mount Rainier was unable to get a good shot off before the buzzer. Congratulations to the Bullpups in a 53-51 win!

Top Performers:
Gonzaga Prep
Otiona Gildon – 18 points, 15 rebounds
Laura Stockton – 11 points, 10 rebounds, 6 assists, 2 blocks

Mount Rainier
Brittany McPhee – 28 points, 19 rebounds, 5 blocks, 2 steals

Undefeated Richland Advances to 4A State Final

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Saturday March 8th 2014 4A Boys Basketball
Tacoma Dome 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Todd Beamer 12 8 21 20 61
Richland 14 19 22 20 75

Undefeated Richland Advances to 4A State Final
By Colin Caruso

In the nightcap 4A boys game, the undefeated Richland Bombers faced off against the 22-4 Todd Beamer Titans. Outside of Nathan Streufert for the Bombers at 6’7”, Beamer had a complete size advantage in this matchup. This did not bother the Bombers, as they put together a nice 10-2 run in the first and took a 14-12 lead into the second.

Beamer struggled offensively throughout the second; their one on one mentality resulted in a lot of misses and no second chance opportunities. On the other side of the floor, Richland found no problems putting the ball through the hoop. Bomber Steven Beo had a great first half with 11 points, and Richland went into the locker room feeling good with a 13 point lead.

Beo took over to start the third quarter. He hit three straight three pointers for the Bombers, pushing their lead to 19. But Beamer would not let the game get out of hand. They continued to battle and clawed their way back to a ten point deficit on threes from Quadir Williams and Bogdon Bliznyuk. Fouls began to plague both teams late in the quarter, as Raybonne Freeman for the Titans and Nathan Streufert for the Bombers both gathered their fourth. Richland extended their lead to 14 going into the fourth.

The 14 point lead ballooned to as many as 20 for the Bombers, who were not bothered at all by the Beamer press. Beamer could not get back into this one; too many miscues on offense and phenomenal shooting from the Bombers. Richland took this one with ease, 75-61, and will face the Garfield Bulldogs for the 4A state final.

Top Performers:
Todd Beamer
Charles Frazier – 13 points, 8 rebounds

Richland
Steven Beo – 29 points, 8 rebounds, 4 assists, 2 steals
Jacob DeVries – 18 points, 8 rebounds
Nathan Streufert – 8 points, 12 rebounds, 4 assists

Garfield Sneaks Past Issaquah to Face Bombers in State Final

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Saturday March 8th 2014 4A Boys Basketball
Tacoma Dome 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Garfield 17 17 13 14 61
Issaquah 13 21 16 9 59

Garfield Sneaks Past Issaquah to Face Bombers in State Final
By Colin Caruso

In their fourth matchup on the year, the one loss Garfield Bulldogs faced off against the 19-6 Issaquah Eagles for a trip to the 4A state final. Garfield’s only loss came to these Eagles in the latter half of the regular season by just two points, a loss Garfield avenged in the KingCo championship game with an 18 point win.

The pace of this game was frantic at the beginning, resulting in one key player on each team getting two early fouls. Senior Jake Henke for the Eagles and senior Brayon Blake for the Bulldogs both sat the remainder of the first quarter and well into the second with their foul trouble. Garfield’s leading scorer Tramaine Isabell led all first quarter scorers with eight, and the Bulldogs took a four point lead into the second.
Issaquah took the momentum back in the second quarter behind 11 points from senior Brian Watson. He led the 21 point rally for the Eagles, who tied the game going into half at 34.

Foul trouble again became a factor in the third quarter, with both Blake and Torrence Baker for Garfield picking up their fourth fouls. Issaquah capitalized on the line and took a three point lead into the fourth.

The fourth quarter remained nail-biting close. Garfield shot well from the free-throw line all night, 23-27 overall, and they were able to tie the contest with just over two minutes to play. Zachariah Shepherd hit a three for the Dogs to put them up three, but fouled on the next defensive possession, fouling him out of the game. Ty Gibson hit two free-throws for the Eagles on the other end, but Isabell converted on a great dribble drive to regain the lead by three. Addison McIrvin was fouled on the next Issaquah possession and hit one of two at the line. He was fouled again on a Garfield miss and made both to tie the game at 59 with one minute to go. A kick ball gave the Bulldogs more time on the shot clock, and Henke fouled Jashaun Agosto for the Bulldogs on a three pointer with 20 seconds remaining, Henke’s fifth foul. Agosto hit two of three to go up 61-59. After a timeout, Eagle Brian Watson attempted a fade away from the baseline that missed, and the Bulldogs hung on to advance to the 4A state final. What a game!

Top Performers:
Garfield
Tramaine Isabell – 19 points, 5 rebounds
Brayon Blake – 11 points, 6 rebounds

Issaquah
Ty Gibson – 16 points, 9 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 steals
Brian Watson – 17 points, 4 rebounds

DeVries Threes Highlight Explosive Bomber Win in Quarterfinals

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Thursday March 6th 2014 4A Boys Basketball
Tacoma Dome 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Richland 10 26 21 21 78
Wenatchee 10 12 7 20 49

DeVries Threes Highlight Explosive Bomber Win in Quarterfinals
By Steven Dion

Day one of the Hardwood Classic concluded with a 4A matchup between two schools east of the mountains: Wenatchee and Richland. The Bombers of the Tri-Cities carried a perfect 23-0 record into this ballgame averaging nearly 90 points per contest. They also made an appearance to state last season with much of the same returning cast. Wenatchee with its 16-7 record relied on a hot streak down the postseason road to find itself in “The Woodshed” in 2014 including a one-point victory over defending state champions Curtis in regionals. The well-represented fan sections of each side were eager to finally watch some basketball after long drives from the other side of the state.

In the opening minute, Richland senior Jacob DeVries scored five points after a three, steal, then put-back. Wenatchee head coach Ron Stone quickly called a timeout to calm his team down. Stone clearly understood the fast pace the Bombers like to play, and his strategy after the timeout paid off in the short term. The Panthers slowed the tempo of the game down and matched RHS bucket for bucket. After one frame, the contest was tied at ten apiece. The second quarter is when the game was blown apart like something seen in Hanford near Richland.

The Bombers went on an offensive surge as they notched 26 points in eight minutes, the highest scoring quarter of all eight boys games played at the Tacoma Dome on Thursday. DeVries supplied a huge dose of these points as his 33 in the game was the highest for a single player all day. The impressive part of the senior’s performance was the remarkable efficiency of 65% from the field and 71% from downtown! The Bombers built a 14 point margin at the half and did not look back.

When play resumed, the Bombers churned out another high-octane quarter and separating themselves 14 more points in the process. Credit Chase Resch of Wenatchee for staying tough down the stretch as he got a few tough shots to go. Also, Panther senior Dillon Sugg was able to register a double-double with 12 points and 10 boards. But this game was all Richland as they had ten different scorers combining for their 78 points. If Richland can keep the hot shooting going, the rest of 4A will have their hands full handing the Bombers their first loss of the season.

Top Performers:
Richland
Jacob DeVries-33 points (13/20 FG’s, 5/7 3-pt FG’s), 6 rebounds, 5 steals, 3 assists

Wenatchee
Dillon Sugg-12 points, 10 rebounds

Garfield Dominates one-loss Kentridge

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Thursday March 6th 2014 4A Boys Basketball
Tacoma Dome 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Kentridge 10 2 10 19 41
Garfield 17 17 15 14 63

Garfield Dominates one-loss Kentridge
By Colin Caruso

In another rough quarterfinal matchup, the one loss Garfield Bulldogs faced off against the one loss Kentridge Chargers for a berth to the 4A state semifinal. Both teams’ losses came late in the year to teams still playing, with Garfield’s loss coming to Issaquah and Kentridge’s loss coming to Todd Beamer.

Garfield jumped out to a quick 7-0 lead in this one, but Kentridge leading scorer Jawan Stepney would not let Garfield make it a blowout. Stepney answered with back to back threes for the Chargers, which kept them in the contest, as the Bulldogs kept their foot to the pedal. Garfield led 17-10 after one quarter.

Kentridge needed to answer to start the second, and it simply did not happen. Garfield held the Chargers to two points in the second quarter, while putting up 17 on their own. Turnovers were the story; 12 total for the Chargers leading to 14 Garfield points off. Kentridge could not get good shots up and Garfield continued their tenacious defensive pressure. Garfield took a commanding 34-12 lead into the half.

The second half looked a lot like the first half in this game, with Garfield controlling the scoring and the pace. Kentridge closed the gap significantly late in the fourth to lose by 22. Their largest deficit was 28 points early in the fourth. Garfield will advance to the 4A state semifinal.

Top Performers:
Kentridge
Jawan Stepney – 13 points, 3 rebounds

Garfield
Tramaine Isabell – 21 points, 5 rebounds, 3 assists, 3 steals

Mount Rainier Takes down Inglemoor, Advances to State Semis

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Thursday March 6th 2014 4A Girls Basketball
Tacoma Dome 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Inglemoor 11 17 7 22 57
Mount Rainier 20 17 15 12 64

Mount Rainier Takes down Inglemoor, Advances to State Semis
By Colin Caruso

In an unfortunate matchup in the round of eight between two of the state’s best 4A girls programs, the McPhee led Mount Rainier Rams took on the Inglemoor Vikings. The Rams are 24-3 on the year, with big wins over two final eight teams, Kentwood and Skyview. Inglemoor is led by post Deja Strother, and they are 21-3 on the season.

Mount Rainier exploded offensively in the first half. They played quicker and with more poise than their competition, and led by as many as 12 points. The McPhee twins combined for 18 points in the first half, but the team was led by Aqeelah Williams’ 11. Strother and Mackenzie Gardner kept the Vikings in the contest with 12 points each, but only two other players for the Vikings scored in the first half. Mount Rainier led 46-33 at the break.

Mount Rainier continued to play fundamentally sound basketball in the third, pushing their lead to as many as 19. It seemed as if the Rams got their hands on every entry pass to Strother, gathering the loose balls and getting out in transition. After three, Mount Rainier led 52-35.
Inglemoor needed a big run to get back into this game, down 17 entering in the fourth. They picked up their defense and the shots began to fall for the Vikings, who started the quarter on a 13-7 run. But it was too little too late. The Vikings won the quarter 22-12, but lost by seven, 64-57. The win for the Rams avenged an earlier season loss to the Vikings, a game Inglemoor won by 15.

Top Performers:
Inglemoor
Deja Strother – 25 points (11-15 FG), 18 rebounds (9 offensive), 2 blocks
Mackenzie Gardner – 14 points, 4 assists

Mount Rainier
Brittany McPhee – 19 points, 8 rebounds, 3 blocks, 2 steals
Jordan McPhee – 12 points, 4 steals

Bellevue Cruises over One Loss Stanwood

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Thursday March 6th 2014 3A Boys Basketball
Tacoma Dome 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Stanwood 15 7 13 8 43
Bellevue 18 15 13 15 61

Bellevue Cruises over One Loss Stanwood
By Colin Caruso

3A state basketball heated up in the quarterfinal matchup between the Bellevue Wolverines and the one loss Stanwood Spartans. Bellevue, regarded as one of the top teams in the state, came into this contest at 20-4, with big wins over O’Dea and Lincoln down the stretch. Stanwood experienced their only loss of the season just two weeks ago against Shorecrest, but took down Foss in the round of 16 to advance to the dome.

Stanwood jumped out to a frantic pace and an 11-2 first quarter lead. The early lead did not phase the Wolverines, who remained calm and capitalized off Stanwood turnovers. The Wolverines closed the first quarter on a 16-4 run to take an 18-15 lead into the second.
The Wolverines scored the first 10 points to extend their 16-4 run to end the first to a 26-4 run spanning both quarters. Lakeside transfer Zack Moore heated up for the Wolverines in the second quarter, scoring 10 of his team’s 15 points. Bellevue led by as many as 14 in the second and took a 33-22 lead into the third quarter.

Stanwood finally stayed even with the Wolverines in the third, with both teams playing scrappier basketball than the first half. The Wolverines capitalized on easy baskets, setting good back screens leaving their teammates wide open under the hoop. The Bellevue lead excelled to fifteen early in the fourth, and they stalled every Stanwood run by great offensive execution. Bellevue controlled throughout, and will advance to the state 3A semifinal on Friday.

Top Performers:
Stanwood
Drew Stang – 13 points, 4 rebounds

Bellevue
Sharif Khan – 14 points, 3 steals, 3 assists
Kyle Foreman – 9 points, 4 assists, 2 steals

Eastside Catholic Handles University, Advances to Face Wilson in Semifinal

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Thursday March 6th 2014 3A Boys Basketball
Tacoma Dome 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Eastside Catholic 15 14 11 13 53
University 11 7 14 7 39

Eastside Catholic Handles University, Advances to Face Wilson in Semifinal
By Colin Caruso

In the second game in Tacoma on Thursday, the University Titans battled the Eastside Catholic Crusaders to face off against the Wilson Rams in the Washington state 3A boys semifinal. University, with a tough regular season this year, won their last six to advance to Tacoma. Eastside Catholic took a different route, widely regarded as one of the top teams in the state, had only two losses on the season outside of their matchups against Rainier Beach, and came in at 21-5.

The discrepancies in records portrayed an imbalance on the floor early in this quarterfinal matchup. A much bigger Eastside Catholic team continued to pound on the interior, shooting layup after layup against an undersized University team. Eastside is typically not an interior scoring team; a good chunk of their points this season are on three pointers and they only attempted five threes in the first half. The Crusaders led 29-18 at the break.

University made a strong push to start the second half. Winning the third quarter 14-11 put them in striking distance going into the fourth. But Eastside was too strong defensively throughout, outscoring the Titans 19-1 on points off turnovers, the difference in the ballgame. Eastside cruised to a 53-39 win.

Top Performers:
Eastside Catholic
Mandrell Worthy – 24 points, 5 rebounds, 3 assists
Matisse Thybulle – 12 points, 4 steals, 2 blocks

University
Ben Kuiper – 10 points, 9 rebounds
Robert Little – 11 points

Thayer Leads Stanwood Over Foss in Regional Matchup

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Sturday March 1st 2014 3A Boys Basketball
Kent Meridian High 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Stanwood 15 14 21 23 73
Foss 10 15 16 14 55

Thayer Leads Stanwood Over Foss in Regional Matchup
By Steven Dion

Entering the month of March, Stanwood has twenty-two wins thus far. Their lone blemish on the season was the most recent game played, a District championship thriller against Shorecrest. With a trip to state at stake on Saturday against a sneaky Foss squad out of a tough Narrows league, the pressure was clearly on the Spartans in their storybook season. Their enormous fan base traveled for this game creating a sea of red in the bleachers. Regardless, the Falcons who are no stranger to postseason basketball were eager to earn their state berth to play in the Dome in their home city of Tacoma.

It was evident Stanwood spent some time in the film room preparing for Foss, especially their star guard and Seattle University commit Armond Davis. To counter the Foss scoring machine, the Spartans put their leader Josh Thayer as the defensive assignment to Davis. Armond took advantage of his half a foot of height advantage by draining several fadeaways, but credit Thayer to making the 6’5 slasher work for every point. The first half featured matching scores for both sides. The exceptional rebounding of Skout Roberson gave Stanwood a huge boost offensively throughout the contest. At the half, SHS led the Falcons by a score of 29-25.

It took less than one minute into the third quarter for Foss to tie up the ballgame at 29 apiece and push reset on the game. This is when the Spartan big man Drew Stang stepped up. His emphatic blocks on the defensive end led to his four buckets in the third frame. A pair of Thayer three-balls helped give the Spartans a five point advantage into the final frame. For Foss to win this ball game, either Davis would have to continue his precision shooting, or the Falcons would need contributions from more than the five starters whom comprised all of the Foss scoring thus far. Stanwood did not allow either as Stang and Brady Garcea aided in a 23 point fourth quarter to propel Sparty to a 73-55 win. Stanwood advances to the state tournament in 2014 after falling one game short of doing so in ’13.

Top Performers:
Stanwood
Josh Thayer – 19 points, exceptional defense effort
Skout Roberson – 21 points

Foss
Armond Davis, Sam Dabalos-McMahon, Olashawan Miller (all double digit scorers-20, 13, 10 respectively)

Hockinson Soars Over Foster, Advances to State

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Sturday March 1st 2014 2A Boys Basketball
Kent Meridian High 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Hockinson 10 18 15 21 64
Foster 9 11 17 16 53

Hockinson Soars Over Foster, Advances to State
By Steven Dion

Kent-Meridian High School played host to regional Saturday for four win-or-go-home games to move on to championship weekend. The first contest of the day featured Hockinson from the Greater St. Helens league and Foster from the Seamount. With a trip to the Yakima Valley SunDome on the line, this interleague matchup was bound to supply plenty of excitement for the Hawk blue and Bulldog purple in the grandstands.

The first half got off to a high energy start as the tempo was fast and the scoring opportunities were plentiful. The amount of offensive rebounds each team recorded early on was noteworthy and led to chaos under the rim as each squad battled for boards. Hockinson established their precision shooting in the first sixteen minutes highlighted by a trio of three-pointers by Alan Haagen. Foster countered with effective perimeter shooting of their own by Cory Covarrubia, Patrick Straight, and Ben Mitchell. The matchup of forwards Austin Steimle of HHS and Ronnie Roberson of FHS was fun to watch as the bigs were very physical down low. The Hawks were able to build an eight point lead after one half of play at 28-20.

After the break, Foster understood they would need to find a leader that could step up and get the Bulldogs back into the game. Mitchell answered the call. The senior distributed the ball to teammates nicely and attacked the rim aggressively. Hockinson did not back down though as Jack Klodt made an acrobatic And-1 en route to a ten point third quarter. At the beginning of the fourth quarter, the Hawks held onto a six point lead and put on the finishing touches. Converting on several foul shots down the stretch, HHS was able to win convincingly by the final score of 64-53 largely due the high scoring volume of Klodt and Haagen with 24 and 22 points respectively. Congrats to the Hawks as they punch their ticket to the big dance.

Top Performers:
Hockinson
Jack Klodt – 24 points, 15/15 FT’s
Alan Haagen – 22 points, 13/14 FT’s

Foster
Cory Covarrubia- 12 points, 4-3pt. FG’s

Tulalip Earns Ticket to State with Win Over Wilbur-Creston

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Friday February 28th 2014 1B Boys Basketball
Everett Community College 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Tulalip Heritage 22 20 16 23 81
Wilbur-Creston 15 14 23 12 64

Tulalip Earns Ticket to State with Win Over Wilbur-Creston
By Steven Dion

Win or go home. This is the nature of the regional round leading up to the state tournament next week. The fate of Tulalip Heritage’s and Wilbur-Creston’s seasons would be decided on Friday night at Everett Community College. The winner of this game would receive their ticket to the state tournament at Spokane Arena next week and be three wins away from a championship. The loser would end their season in the sweet sixteen round.

Tulalip wasted no time getting their momentum rolling as they started the game on an 11-0 run. The Hawks shot the ball extremely well out of the gate, especially from downtown. Four players scored in double figures for Tulalip which presented matchup problems for Wilbur-Creston throughout the game. The Wildcats were able to rally midway through the second quarter from a double-digit deficit by feeding Colton Magers. The junior forced his way through the Hawks defense to put up shots in the paint en route to 19 points. However, THHS closed the quarter strong and took a 42-29 lead into the locker room.

When the third quarter began, Tulalip continued to be the aggressor in this contest as their precision passing in transition led to a number of buckets at the rim. The Wildcats were tentative in their shot selection, which prevented them from grabbing a lead in this game. Bradley Fryberg started to loosen up in this game for Tulalip in the second half as his gritty defense highlighted by eight steals deflated the WC attack. Fryberg was slinging the rock to teammates like a quarterback down the stretch, many of which were no-look passes. The junior’s command of the court helped Tulalip’s leading scorers in Ayrik Miranda and Keanu Hamilton pick up an 81-64 win and a trip to state.

Top Performers:
Tulalip Heritage
Keanu Hamilton-19 points, 9 rebounds, 5 assists

Wilbur-Creston
Colton Magers-19 points, 6 rebounds, 3 blocks

Ghebremichael Shines As Scots Take Down Undefeated Stanwood

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Saturday February 22nd 2014 3A Boys Basketball
Jackson High 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Shorecrest 13 9 19 22 63
Stanwood 15 10 16 17 58

Ghebremichael Shines As Scots Take Down Undefeated Stanwood
By Steven Dion

It is rare to be undefeated in late February as the state finals are right around the corner. For the Stanwood Spartans, part of a blemish-free record is the target on their backs every game and the pressure-cooker to keep the streak alive. With berths to the regional round already secured, the Scots from Shorecrest Senior High School were able to play with a “nothing-to-lose, everything-to-gain” mentality and challenge for a district title. The player responsible for deciding this game in the waning minutes would be completely unexpected.

When the teams took the floor, the similarities between the two squads were strikingly apparent. Both featured small guard corps as each team had three starters under 6’. The favorite Spartans jumped out to a quick 10-4 lead in the first quarter. Scots’ coach Brian Fischer called a timeout to rally the troops and calm his team down. They responded nicely by quickly closing the gap back up. The clash of centers Masamba Njadoe of ‘Crest and aptly named Drew Stans of Stanwood was intriguing as both players were the prominent forces down low. The Spartans took a 25-22 lead into the locker room as the final few minutes of the half turned into a track meet as the court opened up and the teams ran up and down it.

The third quarter started with a rainstorm in the form of Brady Garcia three pointers. This allowed Shorecrest to grab an early lead in the second half. The momentum carried to the defensive side for the Scots as well through a handful of highlight blocks by Njadoe. However, Stanwood’s leading scorer Josh Thayer started heating up and his fifteen points in the final sixteen minutes helped his team pick up a lead of six with only three points remaining. Enter Daniel Ghebremichael. A non-starter from the Shorecrest lineup finished this game in a fashion that it will be night he will never forget. After the timeout, he grabbed a steal, took it to the rim for a bucket and the foul. With a minute remaining and a tied ballgame, Ghebremichael spotted up for a contested three that went through the net flawlessly. Stanwood’s desperation shot to tie it up clanged off side-rim and was rebounded by Gheb who was promptly fouled. The Scot from the bench scored 13 points in the game, 11 of which came in the fourth quarter. The District 1 title goes to Shorecrest with a shocking 63-58 victory.

Top Performers:
Shorecrest
Daniel Ghebremichael-13 points off bench (11 in 4th quarter including game winning 3-pointer)
Masamba Njadoe-10 points, huge defensive impact

Stanwood
Josh Thayer-20 points (3/3 FT’s)

Mountlake Terrace Grabs Final Playoff Spot Against Marysville-Pilchuck

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Saturday February 22nd 2014 3A Boys Basketball
Jackson High 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Mountlake Terrace 18 16 15 21 70
Marysville-Pilchuck 16 14 16 7 53

Mountlake Terrace Grabs Final Playoff Spot Against Marysville-Pilchuck
By Steven Dion

Jackson High School served as host for two playoff games for District 1 from the Wesco League. The first was the 3A contest between Mountlake Terrace and Marysville-Pilchuck. In a seemingly wide-open classification moving forward in the state tournament, the winner of this game has a fair shot of continuing their run in the next round. With a nice crowd in hand, everyone in the building was in for an exciting game.

Mountlake Terrace established their variety of scoring options early as six Hawk players scored in the first quarter alone. This was largely due to MP’s inability to contain the interior. Terrace had an advantage from the three to five positions on the floor as their trio of forward/post combos at 6’6 or bigger were matched with Pilchuck’s smaller centers at around 6’4. The Tomahawks were able to get a boost from nice shooting from their guards Bryce Juneau and Josh Bevan. The pair combined for 19 of Pilchuck’s thirty first-half points. With a four point lead after the first half, Mountlake Terrace’s ability to feed a seemingly unblocked Greg Bowman would set the tone for the rest of the game.

When play continued, the Hawks continued their trend of cashing in on offensive rebounds. Crashing the boards in the attacking zone provided many of Terrace’s buckets. Marysville-Pilchuck got their shooting rolling as Michael Painter and Juneau produced the majority of their team’s scoring. Bryce Juneau at 5’10 and only a sophomore showed senior-like poise in this game as he led his team with 20 points. Carrying only a three point lead into the final quarter, Mountlake Terrace opened the fourth with a 14-0 run to essentially dash any hopes of MPHS rallying back. Loren Lacasse played a large role in that impressive run down the stretch. At the end of regulation, Terrace walked away with a 70-53 victory.

Top Performers:
Mountlake Terrace
Four players in double figures-Greg Bowman (23), Loren Lacasse (20), Yoel Tekle (12), Gabe Altenberger (10)

Marysville-Pilchuck
Bryce Juneau-19 points

Edmonds-Woodway Clinches Last Regional Berth with Win Over Snohomish

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Thursday Feb 20th 2014 4A Boys Basketball
Mountlake-Terrace High 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Edmonds-Woodway 13 22 17 14 66
Snohomish 12 10 15 20 57

Edmonds-Woodway Clinches Last Regional Berth with Win Over Snohomish
By Steven Dion

There was one ticket to the sweet sixteen, the regional tournament. There were two teams: Edmonds-Woodway and Snohomish. The coveted spot would be awarded Thursday night at Mountlake Terrace High School. One of these two 4A Wesco squads would get the opportunity to host the third seed from KingCo on Saturday to finalize seeding for the next round. With the season on the line, the crowd at the MTHS gym was in for an exciting battle.

The first half featured back-and-forth scoring, including some nice dishes by Trey Holland of the Warriors. The freshman guard of EWHS was able to get penetration into the paint and find open shooters on the perimeter. Snohomish countered with efficient jump-shooting by the likes of Collin Kane and Josh Baird. The Warriors were able to create some separation midway through the second quarter with some triples by Jordan Rice. After sixteen minutes of play, Edmonds-Woodway picked up a double digit lead at 35-22.

When play resumed, Snohomish showed urgency to climb back into the contest early in the second half. Unfortunately, the Panthers suffered a tough wrist injury to Collin Kane in which he was unable to return from. E-W responded to the delay of play by continuing their sprint to the finish line. A dunk by Travis Bakken and sharp shooting by Jason Smarr continued the Warrior assault. The long, contested shots thwarted Snohomish’s attempt to climb back into the game, despite Andrew Ivelia and Kane’s continued scoring. When the buzzer sounded, Edmonds-Woodway won their ticket to regionals in convincing fashion by the score of 66-57.

Top Performers:
Edmonds-Woodway
Travis Bakken-19 points, 10 rebounds, 6 blocks
Jason Smarr-21 points, 3 rebounds, 2 assists

Snohomish
Collin Kane-19 points

Blaine Cruises Past Eatonville in District Matchup

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Thursday Feb 20th 2014 1A Girls Basketball
Lynnwood High School 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Blaine 14 18 19 9 60
Eatonville 7 8 12 17 44

Blaine Cruises Past Eatonville in District Matchup
By Steven Dion

Game two of three in the slate of girls Tri-District matchups on Thursday night at Lynnwood High School was a meeting between the Cruisers of Eatonville and a clever name for the school that essentially sits between the United States and Canada, the Blaine Borderites. These schools are separated by a few hundred miles so it would be interesting how unfamiliar opponents from different districts would match up with one another.

The Borderites caught EHS on their heels early as a handful of opening possessions led to easy buckets in the Cruiser zone. This forced an early timeout called by Davina Serdahl to wake up her team. When play resumed, Blaine kept their foot on the pedal as Eatonville was trailing 14-3 to start the game. Alexis McElwain and Taylor D’Vovec eached scored a dozen in the first half which outscored the entire EHS scoring output by nine points. Cruiser senior Lauren Pate countered with aggressive play by scoring all but two of Eatonville’s second quarter points. At halftime, Blaine grabbed a commanding lead at 29-15.

Down by double digits with sixteen minutes of play remaining, the Cruisers needed to go on a big run to climb back into the contest. Kaelyn Voss answered the call to an extent by commanding the EHS attack. She was able to notch seventeen of her team’s 29 second half points, including three from downtown. However, McElwain and Mandy Hayes kept their scoring output rolling down the stretch to preserve the Blaine lead. The Borderites’ ability to collapse into the interior when Eatonville attacked the rim prevented and disrupted many scoring opportunities. Credit the Cruisers for hanging tough despite giving up a big lead early and Blaine for not wavering after grabbing the initial momentum. When the buzzer sounded, Blaine earned a 60-44 victory.

Top Performers:
Blaine
Alexis McElwain-24 points

Eatonville
Kaelyn Voss-22 points

Bremerton Sneaks Past Clover Park in District Quarterfinals

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Wednesday Feb 19th 2014 2A Boys Basketball
Foss High School 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Bremerton 14 14 10 17 55
Clover Park 13 10 11 19 53

Bremerton Sneaks Past Clover Park in District Quarterfinals
By Steven Dion

Game two on Wednesday night in Dalesky & Black Gymnasium at Foss High School featured the second seed in Bremerton against Clover Park at number seven. The winner would take on Fife who won the game played prior to this one. Additionally, the loser would face Olympic in the consolation bracket. The ability of the Knights to limit the scoring Warrior senior and recently named 2A player of the year Philip Winston would play a big role in the result of this contest.

This game was exciting from the start as both teams were able to get multiple looks in the offensive zone. There were a handful of possessions where a flurry of putbacks were thrown at the rim by the attacking team. CPHS senior Anthony White was a monster on the boards and was there to pick up some rebounds on misses from his shooters. Surprisingly, Winston had trouble finding his shot early in this ball game and it would continue throughout. Bremerton guard Tarez Tyree Mason had an impressive second quarter, scoring ten points in the eight minutes, primarily through steals on defense and picking apart the suspect interior defense of the Warriors. At the half, Bremerton led 28-23.

Upon resuming this game, both teams had a tough time finding their groove. Clover Park made several errors on both sides of the ball. Fortunately for them, the Knights failed to capitalize on many of those occasions. BHS’ leading scorer through the season Deonte Dixon showed his athletic ability as a lob near the rim was caught in the air with his back to the hoop and slammed to the rim. A highlight dunk was ruined by a slight miss getting it through the hoop. Dixon still scored a game-high 20 points. CPHS climbed back in the game late with some threes by Trey Martin and Martino Smith. The Knights missed free throws down the stretch and gave Winston a chance to tie it up in the final seconds. His drive to the hoop resulted in a tough up-and-under that caught a lot of rim, but did not fall. Bremerton escaped by a deuce by the score of 55-53.

Top Performers:
Bremerton
Deonte Dixon-20 points

Clover Park
Philip Winston-17 points

Fife Prevails Over Olympic in the Battle of Trojans

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Wednesday Feb 19th 2014 2A Boys Basketball
Foss High School 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Fife 10 6 9 12 37
Olympic 7 14 8 7 36

Fife Prevails Over Olympic in the Battle of Trojans
By Steven Dion

In the quarterfinals of the District 3 2A Basketball Tournament, the third seed in Fife met sixth seed Olympic at Foss High School on Wednesday night. OHS defeated Steilacoom in the first round on Monday by the score of 54-42. Fife received a first round bye for being a top four finisher in league. The winner of this matchup would face the winner of Clover Park/Bremerton on Friday whereas the loser would take on team that failed to pick up the win on the aforementioned game.

FHS guard Austin Wood helped his team pick up some early momentum as he drew some charges under the rim to force turnovers. Olympic responded nicely by picking up their defensive intensity. The up-tempo offense Fife built early on was replaced with perimeter shots that were not falling regularly. A 10-2 run by OHS including 6 by sophomore post Jumier Johnson helped the Trojans from Silverdale take a 21-16 lead into the locker room.

When play resumed, impact bench player from Fife Jephthah Donker excited the crowd with highlight blocks and a bucket with foul on the offensive end. Olympic’s Makaleb McInnis despite only scoring 5 points had big contributions with aggressive play. The fourth quarter was a chess match with alternating possessions emptying the shot clock and back-and-forth trading of buckets. With thirty seconds left and a tie ballgame, Alex Lemoncelli intercepted an Olympic pass and took the ball to the hoop. The shot did not fall, but the senior drew a foul. He drained the second shot and that was the difference in the game as Fife won 37-36.

Top Performers:
Fife
Alex Lemoncelli-11 points including game winning steal and FT
Austin Woods-10 points

Olympic
Jumier Johnson-12 points (6/10 FG’s)

O’Dea Cruises to Huge Win Over Islanders

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Tuesday Feb 18th 2014 3A Boys Basketball
Bellevue College 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
O'Dea 16 19 20 22 77
Mercer Island 9 3 9 11 32

O’Dea Cruises to Huge Win Over Islanders
By Steven Dion

When you are one of the best teams in the state and seemingly every shot falls, it’s a recipe for disaster to virtually any opponent. The Islanders of Mercer Island were the unfortunate victim to a complete game by the Irish on both ends of the floor. The stifling defense the Irish is capable of throwing at opponents was clicking on all cylinders which translated to smooth offensive sets. Mercer Island earned a first round bye in the SeaKing tourney after solid play in KingCo regular season. O’Dea defeated Nathan hale by a dozen on Saturday. The winner of this contest would take on the winner of Bainbridge versus Rainier Beach.

The first four minutes of the game were the most evenly matched as O’Dea took a few minutes to get rolling. The Islander guards did a nice job keeping the three-point threat Quin Barnard unable to take attempts from the perimeter. Unfortunately, Mercer was unable to capitalize on the slow O’Dea start by only scoring 9 points in the first frame. The second quarter is where the Irish grabbed this game by the horns. Jacob Lampkin was a force in the low block throwing that lanky 6’9 frame around. The senior even drained a triple in that second quarter as part of a strong eight points in eight minutes. Turnovers were plentiful as the Islanders were unable to get any open looks and for that matter shot attempts as the Islanders only scored 3 points in the second quarter! One takeaway in the O’Dea zone led to a Jamie Orme dunk on the other end. At the half, OHS led by 23 points at 35-12.

Not much changed in the second half as O’Dea continued to dominate in all phases of the game. This fighting Irish squad is talented, but even the biggest fan of the red and yellow would admit they will have a tough time replicating this performance time after time. There was a point in the fourth quarter where a handful of O’Dea possession resulted in three after three. It was curious that Al Hairston did not pull out his starters late in the fourth quarter even with a forty point lead and a running clock. A highlight for the Islanders in the second half was Kaleb Warner going coast-to-coast and finishing with a two-handed slam. But a complete game by the Irish earned them a 77-32 win. Up next, Rainier Beach. They’ll need this performance and maybe more to take down the Vikings.

Top Performers:
O’Dea
Jamie Orme, Tyler Kidd, Quin Barnard, David Woodard, Jacob Lampkin (All in double figures)

Mercer Island
Andrew Pickles-9 points (played strong defense against relentless O’Dea attack)

Mercer Island Hangs on Despite Late West Seattle Surge

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Tuesday Feb 18th 2014 3A Girls Basketball
Bellevue College 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Mercer Island 11 15 13 13 52
West Seattle 11 8 11 19 49

Mercer Island Hangs on Despite Late West Seattle Surge
By Steven Dion

In the second round of the District 2 3A SeaKing Girls Basketball tournament, Mercer Island was set to face West Seattle. The Islanders received a first-round bye while West Seattle snuck past Eastside Catholic in a loser-out opener by the score of 34-33. The Wildcats have been a tough matchup throughout the season and will continue to do so in upcoming season as the starting lineup consists of three sophomores and two seniors. There is not a single senior on the roster. Mercer Island plays tough perimeter defense and boasts plenty of scoring options. Winner of this game was set to face the winner of Cleveland/Liberty.

The first quarter was a back-and-forth affair as neither team was able to build much separation to the opposition. Islander junior guard Jamie Mounger put together a strong first half by knocking down five field goals for ten points, some of which heavily contested. West Seattle countered with their 6’5 sophomore Lydia Giomi. The post was a tough matchup for MIHS on both sides of the floor as Giomi rebounded well and was able to create space and open looks under the hoop. Mercer Island showed tremendous anticipation of WSHS screens which resulted in a number of turnovers going the other way. A scoring spree midway through the second frame gave the Wildcats some breathing room and a seven point lead at the break.

The struggle for both teams to knock down perimeter shots continued in the second half. As a result, this game took place almost exclusively in the paint. The matchup down low between Giomi and Islander forward/center Anna Luce was very physical as they jockeyed for possession aggressively under the bucket. The Islanders were able to carry a double digit lead until midway through the fourth. West Seattle went on a run that brought the Wildcats within two points and a trip to the foul stripe. The shooter missed, but WS recovered and had a flurry of game-tying shots fired at the hoop in the final seconds. The could not connect and eventually fouled an Islander. After making one of two, the Cats fired one last desperation three-ball, but fell short. The Islanders were victorious by a slim margin at 52-49.

Top Performers:
Mercer Island
Jess Blakeslee-18 points (6/7 FT’s)
Jamie Mounger-14 points (5 first-half field goals)

West Seattle
Lydia Giomi-20 points (4/4 FT’s)

Emerald Ridge Extends Season With Victory Over Tahoma

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Saturday Feb 15th 2014 4A Boys Basketball
Mount Tahoma High 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Emerald Ridge 7 19 24 15 65
Tahoma 6 13 13 15 47

Emerald Ridge Extends Season With Victory Over Tahoma
By Steven Dion

Game two of the slate of District 3/4 matchups at Mount Tahoma High School on Saturday featured another consolation game with loser-out stakes attached to it and winner advances. The teams set to play were the Emerald Ridge Jaguars from South Hill and Tahoma Bears. This battle between SPSL South and North was prime for exciting play from both sides. Both teams suffered close losses in the first round of districts. Emerald Ridge fell to Stadium by one point on short rest whereas Tahoma was defeated by five points against the defending state champs in Curtis.

Tahoma picked up an early lead in the game by way of a 6-0 run in the opening minutes. Emerald Ridge had open looks, but nothing was falling until their first points of the game came with 2:51 left in the first frame on free throws. Jaguar senior post Goa Mal was a key bench player as his length in the paint created solid interior pressure. ER finally got rolling and rattled off seven straight to take the lead. They would not look back the rest of the way. Jaguar guard Marcus Harris was not afraid to let it fly in this game and despite spotty shooting at times, the senior made enough to keep warranting opportunities. Tahoma’s leading scorer Coleman Wooten was held to five points in the first half who averages nearly 26 a ballgame. At the break, the Jags led 26-19.

Much like Mal’s impact noted earlier, more of Emerald Ridge’s several role players were highlighted in the second half. Guillermo Alcaraz knocked down some back-breaking And-1s that extended the ER lead in the third. The final minute in the quarter was the Raeshon Scales Show as the sophomore buried 3 triples including one at the buzzer in front of his own bench where he was promptly mobbed afterwards. Leading 50-32 in the final quarter, the Jags were in the driver’s seat. Tahoma was resilient and earned 10 trips to the free throw line in the final eight minutes, making 8. However, Harris’ 31 points and solid contributions up and down the roster sealed a respectable victory for the Jaguars, who live to see another day in districts.

Top Performers:
Emerald Ridge
Marcus Harris-31 points (10/14 FT’s including making both after getting poked in the eye)

Tahoma
Coleman Wooten-20 points (7/11 FT’s)

Battle Ground Keeps Season Alive with Win Over Tides

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Saturday Feb 15th 2014 4A Boys Basketball
Mount Tahoma High 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Battle Ground 14 12 19 20 65
Gig Harbor 14 12 13 22 61

Battle Ground Keeps Season Alive with Win Over Tides
By Steven Dion

In the consolation bracket of the District 3/4 tournament, the Battle Ground Tigers were set to take on the Tides of Gig Harbor. BGHS fell to Federal Way in the opening round on Thursday by the score of 82-58. GHHS was defeated by Beamer 67-54 in the opening round as well. In this loser-out contest, the possibility of finishing up to sixth place in the district tourney was still up for grabs by these unfamiliar opponents.

The bulk of early shots by the Tigers were launched by Devin Johnson and Jamie Ford. The forward/guard duo was an integral factor in the outcome of the game and provided solid offensive output despite some difficulty finding consistent rhythm. After the teams were knotted at 14 apiece following the first quarter break, the court began to open up. Each squad was flying up and down the court, but it took until the final minutes before the half to reach the twenties when a string of shots fell for both sides. After sixteen minutes of play tied at 26 apiece, the contest was right as it started. Battle Ground’s strong perimeter defense covered their offensive struggles as the Tigers were 8 of 26 field goals.

The intensity naturally grew in the second half as the reality that one team’s season would be coming to an end clearly resonated on the court. The first offensive possession for Gig Harbor was an And-1 by Casey Gearhart off an offensive board. The junior played big for the Tides on both ends of the floor including a team-high 16 points. But Johnson from the Tigers gave GHHS trouble on the low block throughout as the strong 6’6” junior plays a traditional “back-to-the-hoop” post game. Trailing by nearly double digits down the stretch, Gig Harbor needed buckets. Chris Drake, Chad Glover, and Sam Lovrak rose to the challenge. The Tide trio buried six from downtown in the final minutes to keep the game within reach. However, the Tigers were automatic from the free-throw line as they kept the Tides from stealing the game late. Battle Ground’s 21 of 29 from the charity stripe was the difference in the game and they move on in the tournament. The Tides season is over. Final score 65 to 61.

Top Performers:
Battle Ground
Jamie Ford, Nate Moring, Damien Ford, Devin Johnson (all scored in double figures)

Gig Harbor
Casey Gearhart-16 points, memorable block on defense

Seattle Prep Sails Past Bainbridge for Fifth Seed

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Thursday Feb 13th 2014 3A Boys Basketball
Seattle Prep 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Bainbridge 7 9 11 15 42
Seattle Prep 15 7 10 25 57

Seattle Prep Sails Past Bainbridge for Fifth Seed
By Steven Dion

Thursday night marks day three of the Metro League tournament and the battle for the five seed pitted the Prep Panthers and Bainbridge Spartans. Both teams have already punched their ticket to districts but the result of this contest determined the matchups in the SeaKing tourney. The winner would face the 7th seed from Metro in West Seattle and the team with the loss would meet third seed from KingCo in Mount Si. The Panthers have beaten the Spartans in their lone matchup on January 17th, would the visitors from the island return the favor?

The game got off to a slow start as the first points of the game were not scored for the first 2:10 of the game. Prep sharpshooter Jack Stewart was unable to connect on his early attempts from the perimeter, something uncharacteristic for the junior guard. However, the Spartans had scoring issues in the first quarter too as the first bucket came at 4:11 left in the frame. Give Prep’s defense credit as BHS scored only seven points in the first quarter. Coach Kelly’s defensive gameplan continued to succeed as the Panthers established good position to disrupt shots and forces offensive charges. Sophomore Eric Van Hare was a spark off the bench as he drew back to back charges before the half. The low scoring nature of this game would take a 22-16 Prep lead into the break.

The second half would continue the exciting matchup of bigs in SPHS forward Sean Gummersall and Spartan center Oskar Dieterich. They scored some of their team’s most crucial buckets as the posts registered eight and seven points respectively. Seattle Prep’s dynamic guard Aaron Nettles played with his high intensity style on both ends of the floor as one of his highlights was an and-one after knocking down a circus shot in traffic. The freshman scored a game-high 14 points. Bainbridge guard Blake Swanson knocked down shots late, but the damage was done and the game was too far out for the Spartans to recover. The relentless Seattle Prep defense was the x-factor of this contest as BHS was only able to score 42 in a playoff game. The Panthers were able to pick up a 57-42 win in front of their home crowd.

Top Performers:
Bainbridge
Trent Schulte – 9 points (3 3-pt FG’s, all in fourth quarter)

Seattle Prep
Aaron Nettles – 14 points (2/3 FT’s, 2 3-pt FG’s)

Kentwood Girls Conquer the Viks in Third Place SPSL Showdown

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Tuesday Feb 11th 2014 4A Girls Basketball
ShoWare Center 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Kentwood 17 13 10 17 57
Puyallup 8 16 8 14 46

Kentwood Girls Conquer the Viks in Third Place SPSL Showdown
By Steven Dion

The first of four matchups at the ShoWare Center on Tuesday night was the battle for third place in the SPSL between Kentwood and Puyallup. The Conks are led by University of Hawaii commit Sarah Toeaina, a 12-letter varsity earner. Puyallup features a dynamic guard/post duo of Braylie Jeffers and Addie Picha. This north versus south battle would provide an admirable third place finish in a competitive South Puget Sound League.

Kentwood took an early grip of this contest by grabbing a double digit lead in the first half. The physicality of this game was prominent as there were Vikings and Conquerors strewn along the hardwood fighting for loose balls. The Lady Viks were able to pull themselves out of a big deficit before the conclusion of the first half, primarily through a pair of triples by Jeffers and Sarah Steimle. The Conks took a 30-24 lead into the locker room.

As if the intensity in the first half was not enough for those in the grandstands, the second half jumped up another notch in the final sixteen minutes. Coach Ainslie put Christina Holland on the floor in the third quarter for PHS and picked up a noticeable return in energy and momentum for the Viks. The Conks countered with strong play by Alycea DeLong, a primarily contributor of offensive rebounds and second chances at the offensive end of the floor. Puyallup clawed back in the contest and were within one to two possessions during the fourth quarter, but the intentional foul game started. Toeaina demonstrated the senior leadership by knocking downs shots from the charity stripe and effectively sealed the deal for the Conquerors. Final score: Kentwood 57 Puyallup 46.

Top Performers:
Kentwood
Sarah Toeaina – 16 points (10/14 FT’s)

Puyallup
Addie Picha – 14 points

O’Dea’s Huge Second Quarter Downs Quakers

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Thursday Feb 13th 2014 3A Boys Basketball
O'Dea High 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Franklin 16 6 9 10 41
O'Dea 15 32 16 14 77

O’Dea’s Huge Second Quarter Downs Quakers
By Colin Caruso

With Metro’s third seed going to the winner and fourth seed going to the loser, O’Dea and Franklin battled on Thursday for the higher seed going into the SeaKing District Tournament. With not a lot of difference between the two seeds going forward, Franklin sat their second leading scorer Eugene Artison, which proved to dismantle the Quakers in the second through fourth quarters.

With Keith Smith already sidelined with a partially torn meniscus for the Quakers, Franklin looked to other players for the scoring void left by their two top scorers out. They found it in the first quarter, distributing the ball well and taking a 16-15 lead into the second. And then everything went sour.

On the back of Quin Barnard, a 5’11 sophomore guard for the Fighting Irish of O’Dea, the Irish outscored the struggling Quakers by 26 points in the second quarter. The Quaker offense did not look anything like it did in the first quarter. Turnover after turnover plagued Franklin, leading to easy finishes at the basket for the Irish and an onslaught of three pointers, led by Barnard.

With a heft 47-22 lead going into halftime, O’Dea was comfortable heading into the third and final quarters. With the scoring void for Franklin, they were not able to put together any big run that even made this game close. O’Dea controlled the rest of the contest, and prevailed with a staggering 77-41 win.

Top Performer:
O’Dea
Quin Barnard – 21 points

Woodinville Soars Over Eastlake in 81 Point Effort

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Friday Jan 31st 2014 4A Girls Basketball
Eastlake High 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Woodinville 15 18 17 31 81
Eastlake 12 12 13 32 69

Woodinville Soars Over Eastlake in 81 Point Effort
By Steven Dion

Two of the top 4A girls teams in #8 Eastlake (10-2 league, 14-3 overall) and Woodinville (9-3, 11-6) met up Friday night for a pivotal battle in the KingCo Crest division. The Lady Wolves are led by post Marijke Vanderschaaf and her 14.3 points per game and superior rebounding ability. Woodinville boasts a lineup full of scoring options including Emily Spencer, Mackenzie Campbell, and Gabby Phillips. The importance of this league matchup was reflected in the attendance as there was a strong turnout for the clash of first and third place in the standings.

The first half opened at an up-tempo pace as both teams were aggressive on getting to the bucket. Vanderschaaf quickly established her rebounding presence as the 6’3 post plucked the ball from air time and time again. Woodinville grabbed a 15-12 lead in the first quarter highlighted by a steal at midcourt by Sabin Keo and a nice dish to Campbell for the score. The Wolves used their length advantage early in the second frame by feeding Ellie Woerner and Vanderschaaf in the paint for high percentage shots. EHS was in the bonus early which yielded several trips to the charity stripe. However, Woodinville’s will to control the pace of the game was felt as the quarter progressed. Falcon senior Erin Hamilton knocked down some tough shots in the lane. Additionally, the defensive awareness of WHS was demonstrated several times as the Falcons took a handful of charges to gain possession. At the half, the home team led 33-24.

Eastlake’s deficit continued to grow into the second half as a 5-0 run to start the third forced the Wolves to call a timeout and regroup down 38-24. Woodinville was simply clicking on this night as four players scored in double figures and their ability to score down low and from three point range kept EHS on the ropes all night. The Wolves were resilient though and made a strong effort to climb back in the game. The Woodinville lead was cut to single digits at the 2:30 mark in the fourth as EHS opted to foul throughout the quarter to protect the clock. Vanderschaaf made 5 buckets in the final eight minutes, but Woodinville refused to let their led dip below seven points. The Falcons cruised to a solid victory in which they scored 81 points over the first place team in KingCo in front of their home crowd. The Wolves notched 69 points in the contest. Do not be surprised if these two teams meet up again this season.

Top Performers:
Woodinville
Emily Spencer 19 points, Mackenzie Campbell 18 points

Eastlake
Marijke Vanderschaaf 23 points, Ellie Woerner 19 points

Garfield Hangs on at Home Against Roosevelt

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Friday Jan 24th 2014 4A Boys Basketball
Garfield High 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Roosevelt 14 11 17 18 60
Garfield 19 16 19 8 62

Garfield Hangs on at Home Against Roosevelt
By Colin Caruso

The undefeated Garfield Bulldogs (16-0) have had little competition this season. With just one game of their first 15 decided by single digits, the Bulldogs have strolled down the stretch of the majority of their contests, with the game comfortably in their hands. Cameron Haslam and the Roosevelt Roughriders vowed to not make that the case on Friday night.

Garfield previously beat the Roughriders at Roosevelt by 21, a game that was decided early in the contest. Garfield jumped out to an early lead in this one too, 8-0 run to begin, allowing everyone to think this would be another Bulldog walkover. Roosevelt clung on to the first quarter after the Bulldog immediate surge, and held right around a ten point deficit throughout the first three quarters. Throughout these quarters, junior guard Cameron Haslam led his Roughriders offensively, scoring 24 points going into the fourth.

The Bulldogs won each of the first three quarters and held a 12 point lead entering the fourth. The Roughriders knew that this was their opportunity, their chance to make a dent in the perfect Bulldog record. Their interior defense strengthened, pushing the Bulldogs off the offensive glass and grabbing a few offensive rebounds of their own. The Roughrider offense also began to open up, working to capture baskets closer to the hoop and getting to the line and taking advantage of those chances.

The Roughriders found themselves clawing back, down two points with just 2.5 seconds on the clock. Haslam scored another 8 points in the fourth, putting his game high total at 32, but he did not receive the ball in the waning seconds. Instead it went to another Roughrider, who unfortunately traveled on the play and was unable to put up a final shot. Led by Tramaine Isabell with 23 points, the Bulldogs were able to sneak away with just a two point win.

Top Performers:
Roosevelt
Cameron Haslam – 32 points

Garfield
Tramaine Isabell – 23 points

Bothell Grinds Out Overtime Victory at Garfield

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Wednesday Jan 29th 2014 4A Girls Basketball
Garfield High 1st 2nd 3rd 4th OT Final
Bothell 12 8 14 11 8 53
Garfield 6 16 13 10 6 51

Bothell Grinds Out Overtime Victory at Garfield
By Steven Dion

With postseason hoops around the corner, teams are jockeying for position to make the big dance in their respective leagues. A pair of KingCo squads on the outside looking in were matched up on Wednesday night in Bothell (5-6 league, 11-6 overall) and host Garfield (3-8, 6-10). Those in attendance for tonight’s game would have thought this was a playoff game as it took more than the usual thirty-two minutes to declare a winner.

The Bulldogs scored the first two buckets of the contest, but would quickly concede the next ten points to the Cougars. BHS found early success by feeding Taya Cordsdale on long passes down the court after sneaking behind the Garfield defense. The six point lead Bothell picked up in the first quarter was erased quickly in the second frame as Garfield’s scrappy defense forced several Coug turnovers. Similarly, the Bulldogs shored up their early offensive struggles by using up more shot clock and finding high percentage shots. Garfield had six scorers in the second quarter and as a result, took a 22-20 lead into the break.

The offense-oriented tone of this game continued into the second half as both squads took advantage of their opposition’s inability to stop the attack. Garfield built a slight lead early in the third from turning rebounds on the defensive end to outlet passes in transition and easy buckets. Bothell was able to close climb back in by closing the third strong largely due to three more field goals by Cordsdale. Taya continued here strong play in the final frame by plucking offensive rebounds and muscling through defenders for put-backs. The Cougs regained the lead for the first time since early in the second quarter with six minutes remaining. With thirty-five seconds remaining in regulation, Bothell grabbed a three point lead after a pair of made free throws. Garfield sophomore Krysma Patu knocked down the tying three-pointer merely seconds later. A missed shot at the buzzer by Bothell would force this contest to be settled beyond the regular four quarters. The Bulldogs picked up the first four points of OT and were seemingly one more basket away from sealing the victory. The reliable Hanna Tyndall responded by knotting the ball game back at 49 apiece. With under a minute remaining, Cordsdale fouled out. A pair of free throws courtesy of Tyndall once again gave BHS the lead. Garfield was unable to find an open look on the final possession and the win was awarded to the road Cougs by the final score of 53-51.

Top Performers:
Bothell
Taya Cordsdale – 15 points

Garfield
Juanita Agosto – 25 points

O’Dea Avenges Early Season Defeat to Prep with Victory Over Panthers at Home

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Tuesday Jan 21st 2014 3A Boys Basketball
O'Dea High 1st 2nd 3rd 4th OT1 OT2 Final
Seattle Prep 15 16 16 9 2 2 60
O'Dea 10 12 15 19 2 6 64

O’Dea Avenges Early Season Defeat to Prep with Victory Over Panthers at Home
By Steven Dion

The rivalry between Seattle Prep and O’Dea travels back through many generations. These Metro League schools are on the same street, but seemingly worlds apart. Basketball games between Prep and the Fighting Irish are always exciting and competitive; Tuesday night was no exception. Eight extra minutes of basketball were required to determine a victor between two of Seattle’s premier hoops programs.

The host Irish squad seemed tentative from the get-go as senior point guard Tyler Kidd displayed frustration in the lethargic O’Dea offense. Coach Kelly’s Panthers were able to force their opponent to take ill-advised FG attempts in the first half. Prep sharpshooter Jack Stewart found a groove from distance as the junior nailed three from downtown in the first half. The Irish dug themselves into a nine point deficit at the half largely due to a balanced offensive attack. The combo of Quin Barnard and Jacob Lampkin accounted for 17 of the Irish’s 22 points in the first sixteen minutes. The home team would need more contributors down the stretch to avoid a season sweep from their league foe.

O’Dea chose to adjust to a smaller lineup in the third as they loaded the floor with guards. The speed of the game increased noticeably and the floor opened up for scoring attempts in transition. Seattle Prep remained composed as Stewart buried another pair from the perimeter en route to a game-high 20 points. With a ten point lead heading into the final frame, the Panthers were eight minutes away from securing an impressive road victory. Enter Jamie Orme. The 6’6” senior guard/forward combo for the Irish demanded the ball to get his team back into the game. Orme was a perfect six for six from the free throw line down the stretch and disrupted a number of Prep shots in the final quarter. Tied at 56 apiece, each team had a final possession to win the game in the final thirty seconds, but both came up empty handed. We were headed to overtime. A defensive minded overtime period only led to one bucket for each squad in four minutes. We headed into double overtime, and Kidd rose to the occasion. O’Dea’s quarterback on the court buried a contested turnaround jumper and slipped a perfect pass to Orme in the low post for two daggers. Prep’s desperation shots did not fall and the Irish locked up a 64-60 victory in double overtime.

Top Performers:
Seattle Prep
Jack Stewart – 20 points (6 3PT FG’s)

O’Dea
Jamie Orme-O’Dea-14 points (8/8 FTs, 10 pts in 4th qtr+ OTs)

Jefferson (OR) Barely Hangs on to Defeat Beamer

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Monday Jan 20th 2014 4A Boys Basketball
Garfield High 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Jefferson (OR) 24 24 5 14 67
Todd Beamer 11 11 21 17 60

Jefferson (OR) Barely Hangs on to Defeat Beamer
By Colin Caruso

In the final game of the Unity in the Community Showcase, the Todd Beamer Titans hosted the Jefferson Democrats from Oregon. Unfortunately for Root Sports they did not televise this game, as this was by far the most entertaining matchup. Jefferson has one loss on the year, to the mighty Rainier Beach Vikings. Beamer also had one loss entering this contest, to the Lincoln Abes.

Jefferson began this contest unconsciously hot from long range. Back to back 24 point quarters with a total of eight three pointers made put the Beamer Titans in a big hole. Also, Beamer couldn’t get past the two towers for the Democrats, both standing over 6’9″ and turning away most shots at the rim. Jefferson led convincingly 48-22 at the half.

The Beamer staff decided that after the first half it was time to put into effect the terrorizing Beamer full court press. Todd Beamer is an interesting team in that they have five or six players who all hover around the 6’4″ and 6’5″ range who all move well. Their diamond press proved extremely challenging for the Democrats, who only put up 5 points in the third quarter.

By pressing with your best players, you also risk the occurrences of random fouls far away from the basket. This began to hurt the Titans, as their leading scorer in the contest and captain Trey Burch-Manning fouled out. This put a cap to the fantastic comeback for Todd Beamer, who once came as close as four points late in the fourth quarter. But Jefferson held on while only scoring 19 points in the second half to a 67-60 win.

Top Performer:
Jefferson
Silas Melson – 25 points