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High School Sports Blog

The latest news and analysis on high-school sports around the Seattle area

February 13, 2008 at 11:19 AM

Beach the 3A team to beat

Our Craig Smith opened his story about Rainier Beach today with this line: “Talk about streaks!” The Vikings’ run of 11 consecutive appearances in the Metro League title game is undoubtedly impressive. But more impressive is how the 11th team has gotten there.

The average score of a Rainier Beach game this season? Vikings 80, Opponent 54. That includes the Vikings’ only loss, which came against Franklin, the second-ranked team in 4A, in overtime. Since that game, Rainier Beach has won only one game by fewer than 10 points — an eight-point win against O’Dea in January. But last night, the Vikings convincingly beat the state champs 75-53, and proved why the Vikings are the favorites to be the champs this time around.

You’re welcome to say what you want — many already have — about how many Vikings are transfers from other schools. But there’s no denying the talent Rainier Beach has at each position, and how difficult it will be for any team to match up with the Vikings in March.

The next team with a shot at Beach? Sixth-ranked Seattle Prep, which does have depth and strong players at each position. But the Panthers can tell you how difficult it is to run with Beach. In their first meeting, way back in December, Rainier Beach won 96-82.

Morning stars

1. Jack Hanley, Seattle Prep, boys basketball. Scored 13 points in the fourth quarter, including the winning basket against Cleveland with only six seconds left. Then he went down on the other end and secured the rebound.

2. Karri Gallagher, Lake Stevens, girls basketball. Led third-ranked Lake Stevens to a first-round victory against Mountlake Terrace with 33 points.

3. Tony Wroten, Garfield, boys basketball. Scored 29 points, with 12 rebounds and five assists — and drew a game-changing charge — in a 73-62 victory win against Inglemoor.

Tonight’s top games

1. Federal Way at Decatur, boys basketball, 7 p.m. What a first-round matchup! These two teams split in the regular season, and the winner faces a winner-to-state game, possibly against Bellarmine Prep.

2. Franklin at Roosevelt, girls basketball, 7:30 p.m. The Roughriders face a tough draw to state, starting tonight against Franklin, which beat Roosevelt 41-38 earlier this season.

3. Gig Harbor at Kentwood, boys basketball, 7 p.m. We’ve got a good big-man matchup here, with Gig Harbor’s Mathias Ward against Kentwood’s Josh Smith.

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