It’s hard for me to believe that the real No. 1 teams in the state will be crowned just one week from Saturday.
The season is flying by. In fact, it’s over for a number of teams — including a couple that were ranked last week. Kennewick, a 2011 state qualifier that sat at No. 8 in 3A, was elminated by University of Spokane in the regional tournament last Saturday, 3-0. U-Hi was No. 6 last week, but lost to Mount Spokane (then No. 9) in the final regular-season match.
So Mount Spokane vaults up to No. 5 this week with U-Hi at No. 7. That regional tourney , which also includes No. 4 Kamiakin and a very good Southridge team, continues Saturday. Only two of those teams will make it to state.
The other ranked team to fall was Pullman, which placed sixth in the 2A state tournament last year and was at No. 8 in the rankings. The Greyhounds were eliminated at district last weekend by East Valley of Spokane (then No. 9). The two teams had split during the regular season, with Pullman winning the second time around.
So let’s stick with 2A for a minute. I’ve dropped Pullman from the rankings (although they very well could be one of the best 10 2A teams in the state). Everyone else won (except No. 7 Capital fell against No. 3 Tumwater, but no shame there). That left just the one opening and I went with Sehome — which lost last week to no. 5 Burlington-Edison but is a very strong team and has been ranked in the Coaches Association poll.
Sequim was also in serious consideration again, but that Northwest Conference is so tough I didn’t feel bad about having three teams in the top-10 (Anacortis is No. 4).
In 3A, Seattle Prep climbs to No. 6 after winning the Metro League tournament. The Panthers beat Bainbridge in the championship match, 3-2. Bainbridge was ranked No. 5 at the time and now slips to No. 8. You can read more about Prep’s resurgance in my Wednesday notebook, The Right Stuff.
With Kennewick out, I debated about several teams, including Shorewood and Stanwood out of WesCo. But I wound up going with North Thurston after the Rams’ upset victory over Timberline in the Narrows tournament Saturday — a team they had lost two twice during the regular season. Timberline was ranked No. 7 at the time and now drops to No. 10 with North Thurston at No. 9.
Now on to 4A, where the big news last week was a pair of “upsets” by Emerald Ridge. I’ve had my eye on the young, talented Jaguars all season and just about the time I was going to try to get them in the top-10, they lost to Bethel.
Last week, though, they swept Curtis (then No. 3), 3-0, and beat No. 10 Auburn Riverside in the SPSL 4A championship match, 3-1.
Welcome to the top-10, ER — all of the way up to No. 6. And I plan to write more about the team in The Right Stuff on Wednesday, so check back.
Curtis bounced back to beat a pretty good Kentwood team in the SPSL tourney and I have the Vikings at No. 7 this week. The one team to drop out was Puyallup, which lost last week to Rogers.
One note to those of you looking for update brackets for the West Central/Southwest Bi-District tournaments, both 4A and 3A — they are being held up because the qualifiers out of the Southwest District are still being determined this week. Well, actually, we know that Camas (ranked No. 4 in 4A) and Pairie (No. 2 in 3A) are in and seeded into the championship matches of their respective sub-district tourneys. They will be either No. 1 or No. 2.
Union (4A) and Columbia River (3A) are assured of berths, too, but still have seeding matches to play. The 3A sub-district tourney ends Tuesday, but the 4A title match isn’t until Wednesday.
I’ll link you to them when I can. For now, you can mull these over:
1. Mead (Spokane)
2. Jackson (Mill Creek)
3. Bellarmine Prep (Tacoma)
5. Newport (Bellevue)
6. Emerald Ridge (Puyallup)
7. Curtis (University Place)
10. Auburn Riverside
1. Mercer Island
2. Prairie (Brush Prairie)
3. Mount Si (Snoaqualmie)
4. Kamiakin (Kennewick)
5. Mount Spokane
6. Seattle Prep
7. University (Spokane)
9. North Thurston (Olympia)
10. Timberline (Lacey)
1. West Valley (Yakima)
7. Capital (Olympia)
8. East Valley (Spokane)
10. Sehome (Bellingham)