I got the chance to watch both Federal Way and Holy Names over the long weekend and both reaffirmed in my mind that they are deserving of the No. 1 sports in the girls basketball rankings for Class 4A and 3A, respectively.
Of course, I haven’t seen Gonzaga Prep (No. 2 in 4) or Prairie (No. 2 in 3A), but have been impressed by their scores and what I’ve heard, so cases for them could be made as well.
But I’ll stick with my preseason favorites unless they fall.
I saw some other quality teams, too — including a first look at Bellarmine Prep, Issaquah and Timberline.
Bellarmine tore Issaquah apart and is really talented. I’ve moved the Lions up to No. in 4A this week. Issaquah, of course, was still reeling from the loss of point guard Blaire Brady, who tore her ACL the night before. I was impressed with the way the Eagles bounced back to be a good Inglemoor team Monday and they still have Maddey Pflaumer along with highly-respected coach Kathy Gibson. So I’m only dropping them down two spots to No. 6 for now. We’ll see how they fare in the tough KingCo 4A the rest of the season.
There were some 4A upsets last week as Auburn Riverside, Moses Lake, Lewis and Clark and Mount Tahoma all lost. Riverside, in fact, lost twice — to Kentwood and Oregon City. Moses Lake went down against Richland, while L-C fell to Central Valley and Mount Tahoma stumbled against South Kitsap.
So, Kentwood and Richland jump into the rankings this week. Moses Lake and AR hang in at 9-10. Mount Tahoma drops out for the moment, but I expect the Thunderbirds to be back. They were without star guard Deborah Anderson (30.9 points, 7 rebounds, 7 steals, 4 assists) against SK for team disciplinary rules, but coach Calvin McHenry said she’ll be back this week.
Look for an interesting game between Mount Tahoma and Bellarmine this Friday.
I nearly went with Emerald Ridge in the top-10. I’ve seen the Jaguars play twice now and at times they look like a state team. But at others I see some lapses in a variety of errors that could hurt them if they don’t all get on the same page, so I’m still holding off.
ER takes on Federal Way tonight (Tuesday), so that should tell us more as well.
In 3A, Kennedy slips from No. 3 to No. 5 after that lopsided loss to Holy Names. I know the Lancers can play better and that game probably will be good for them. Shadle Park climbs back to No. 3 and Cleveland gets the No. 4 spot. I’ll be anxious to see how Cleveland fairs Friday against Holy Names — a rematch of last year’s 3A state championship game, which the Eagles won.
I plan to be there.
I’m convinced Timberline is a contender, too, after seeing the Blazers yesterday. They’ve got some athletes, and they’re still young.
I had the toughest time deciding what to do with the bottom half of the 3A rankings. Lakes, No. 7 last week, was upset by Bonney Lake last week, then lost Saturday to Kentwood (which shouldn’t be a punishable offense for a 3A team, in my book).
I wanted to get Lynnwood back in the top-10, so I did, at No. 9, and that meant a team had to go. It came down to Lakes or Auburn Mountainview, which played Emerald Ridge tough Saturday. I went back and forth but stuck with Lakes, which recently beat Mountainview. I like the way the Lions play, though, and I think they’ll be back in the rankings soon.
All in all, it was kind of a crapshoot this week, but here you go:
1. Federal Way (12-1)
2. Gonzaga Prep (Spokane) (11-1)
3. Bellarmine Prep (Tacoma) (11-2)
4. Edmonds-Woodway (13-3)
5. Chiawana (Pasco) (11-2)
6. Issaquah (9-4)
7. Kentwood (Covington) (10-3)
8. Richland (11-1)
9. Moses Lake (11-3)
10. Auburn Riverside (9-3)
Others to watch (alphabetically) — Battle Ground, Central Valley (Spokane Valley), Eastlake (Sammamish), Emerald Ridge (Puyallup), Evergreen (Vancouver), Garfield, Inglemoor (Kenmore), Jackson (Mill Creek), Lake Stevens, Lewis and Clark (Spokane), Marysville-Pilchuck, Mead (Spokane), Mount Rainier (Des Moines), Mount Tahoma (Tacoma), Rogers (Puyallup), Skyview (Vancouver), South Kitsap (Port Orchard), Stanwood, Woodinville.
1. Holy Names (12-0)
2. Prairie (Brush Prairie) (14-0)
3. Shadle Park (Spokane (9-3)
4, Cleveland (Seattle) (11-2)
5. Kennedy Cathloic (Burien) 13-1
6. Timberline (13-0)
7. Wilson (Tacoma) (11-2)
8. Juanita (Kirkland) (12-2)
9. Lynnwood (12-2)
10. Lakes (9-4)
Others to watch (alphabetically) — Auburn Mountainview, Capital (Olympia), Eastmont (East Wenatchee), Everett, Ferndale, Glacier Peak (Snohomish), Kamiakin (Kennewick), Lake Washington (Kirkland), Lakeside (Seattle), Liberty (Issaquah), Meadowdale (Lynnwood), Mount Si (Snoqualmie), Mountain View (Vancouver), North Central (Spokane), Seattle Prep, Shorecrest, University (Spokane), Yelm.