I’m heading out to cover the West Central District championship games at Showare in Kent, so I don’t have as much time as I’d like to discuss this week’s girls basketball rankings – which, by the way, are the final rankings for 2012-13.
I must say I feel pretty good about the top-10s for Class 4A, 3A and 2A. Hey, they’re all still playing at least! Of course, I was able to make sure of that by dropping teams that are not still alive – in 4A that would be Chiawana (No. 9 last week) and in 3A both Mount Spokane (previously No. 6) and Ferndale (No. 8).
Just another reminder that you can find all of the regional brackets here. Some of the final seedings will be decided today and the rest of them tomorrow, so you’ll have to check back
To be honest, I still think Chiawana might be one of the top-10 4A teams in the state and I debated about keeping the Riverhawks in the final rankings. After all, they took No. 2 Mead to overtime last week and then were eliminated by No. 4 Gonzaga Prep.
It’s really unfortunate the GSL and Mid-Columbia only get two regional berths between them. Have you heard who the other East-side qualifier is in 4A, out of the Columbia Basin Big 9? Davis of Yakima! I’ll be honest – I was shocked when I found out.
And not just because I am a graduate of rival Eisenhower!
Kudos to the Pirates (13-9), who knocked off Moses Lake (18-4), the regular-season champion, to earn the lone berth out of that district. Their only other trip to the top-16 (regionals as we now know them again) was back in 1987.
At any rate, I decided the final rankings should only include teams still playing.
So, let me give you a quick rundown.
With Chiawana out, and the rest of the 4A top-10s pretty much playing to form, there was just one spot up for grabs. I decided to give it to Lake Stevens, which is such a different team with Brooke Pahukoa (dislocated pinky) back in the lineup. Mind you, the Vikings lost 45-36 to No. 3 Lynnwood in the Northwest District tourney last week – but, hey, the Royals are roughing up everyone these days.
Lake Stevens isn’t even assured of a regional berth yet, facing a play-in game with dangerous Newport on Tuesday, but that’s the direction I decided to go.
OK, on to 3A. I am anxious to see No. 1 Prairie take on No. 3 Wilson today (you should be, too!). Should the Falcons be favored to repeat as 3A state champions? It will be my first look at them this season. I have yet to see No. 2 Cleveland play – but the Eagles just keep on winning, and did beat Wilson last month.
I admit I was a little concerned by the score of the Sea-King District championship game: Cleveland 37, Seattle Prep 36. I wasn’t there, but my first reaction: Ugh!
Mind you, No. 4 Prep is awfully good (I had one coach tell me he wouldn’t be surprised to see Cleveland and Seattle Prep play for the state championship, if the bracket aligned right). And I’m sure there was some great defense played in that game, but I’m pretty certain there was some not-so-great offense, too.
With Mount Spokane and Ferndale out of contention, the first teams jumping to mind were Kamiakin and Everett. I’d been a Kamiakin advocate for most of the season, until a couple of late-season blips (such as the loss to Hanford). But the Braves appear to be playing well again and are the No. 1 seed out of their district. I feel pretty comfortable with them at No. 6.
And Everett earned its spot by beating Glacier Peak for the Northwest District title. The Seagulls, back to full strength the last few weeks, are playing really well right now.
And there was room for one more in the 3A rankings after I elected to drop Mercer Island out – even though the Islanders’ lone losses at district were to Cleveland and Bellevue. No shame there, but I am going in a different direction at No. 10 this week.
Stanwood gets the nod over University of Spokane, which has a ton of playoff history and made a not-so-surprising late surge to reach the Sweet Sixteen. Mount Spokane had the better year overall, but the lack of post-season experience ultimately took a toll. Stanwood is a very tough No. 3 seed out of that Northwest District.
Most of the changes in 2A are just re-positioning. Burlington-Edision moves back up after winning the Northwest District tourney, for instance. Pullman drops out after last week’s loss to West Valley of Spokane, and West Valley gets that No. 10 spot over Sumner — a team I’ve had an eye on the past few weeks.
I’m looking forward to seeing the Spartans play today against No. 3 White River, which beat them twice (rather handily) during the regular season. But White River will be short-handed today.
Two starters – including leading scorer Kennedy Hobert – went down in Saturday’s semifinal win over Port Angeles. That’s a big blow for the Hornets. She fell and injured her right wrist (shooting hand) in the first quarter. Coach Chris Gibson said last night they are not certain whether the wrist is broken or sprained (waiting for the swelling to subside), but she is doubtful for today at the very least.
Sutton Mills, a four-year veteran and key cog on defense, is definitely out with a concussion. Gibson is hopeful she can return for the regional round on Friday. Injuries are always unfortunate and they’re really tough at this stage of the season.
So, that’s it for this year’s rankings. I’ll have updates from Showare all day and more about the regional breakdowns later this week. And be sure to check back Thursday for my weekly blog notebook, Post-Ups.
Here you go:
1. Mount Rainier (Des Moines) (23-1)
2. Mead (Spokane) (21-1)
3. Lynnwood (22-1)
4. Gonzaga Prep (Spokane) (21-3)
5. Inglemoor (Kenmore) (20-2)
6. Arlington (19-4)
7. Beamer (Federal Way) (20-4)
8. Skyline (Sammamish) (19-5)
9. Lake Stevens (17-7)
10. Yelm (19-4)
1. Prairie (Brush Prairie) (21-2)
2. Cleveland (Seattle) (23-2)
3. Wilson (Tacoma) (19-2)
4. Seattle Prep (20-5)
5. Bellevue (23-2)
6. Kamiakin (Kennewick) (17-5)
7. Everett (13-10)
8. Glacier Peak (Snohomish) (17-6)
9. Enumclaw (18-6)
10. Stanwood (20-4)
1. Mark Morris (Longview) (21-2)
2. W. F. West (Chehalis) (19-4)
3. White River (Buckley (21-3)
4. Burlington-Edison (20-3)
5. Wapato (20-2)
6. Cedarcrest (Duvall) (20-3)
7. Archbishop Murphy (Everett) (19-4)
8. Ellensburg (19-3)
9. River Ridge (Lacey) (17-5)
10. West Valley (Spokane) (17-5)