Before I head out to cover a couple of regional boys basketball games, I wanted to share some thoughts in Friday’s girls games.
There were some great ones!
One I wish I had been there for: Kentwood’s double-overtime victory over third-ranked Lynnwood, 61-60. On paper, this looks like the biggest upset of the night. However, I said going in that I expected it to be an entertaining game. I gave Lynnwood the edge, but the Conquerors have proven they can hang with anyone when they play well together, which they did again Friday. You can read the game story here.
Another I would have loved to watch: Bellevue’s 58-51 come-from-behind victory over top-ranked Prairie, last year’s 3A champion. The Falcons won’t be in the final eight for the first time since 1997, when they failed to qualify for state. What a great victory for the young Wolverines! You can read about it here.
Then there was Holy Names’ heartbreaking loss to University of Spokane, in overtime. The Cougars were oh-so-close to getting back to Tacoma. That game story is here. And there was another 3A thriller between No. 4 Seattle Prep and No. 10 Stanwood. The Panthers pulled that one out, 44-43, and you can read more here, where there is also mention of Cleveland’s lopsided victory over Kelso.
But back to 4A for a few minutes. I was impressed with how well No. 6 Arlington ran its offense in the 50-42 win over No. 7 Beamer, one of the games I covered. Everyone talks about how the Eagles live and die by the three-pointer (they certainly killed Lake Stevens with 16 of them earlier this season, and they had a few last night), but it was their precision passing and backdoor plays that made the difference.
I would have been nice if Beamer was at full strength (I feel that way about every team). The Titans certainly missed Quinessa Caylao-Do, who might have made a difference against that Arlington zone if she buried some of her usual three-pointers. But Caylao-Do was on the bench with her left arm in a sling due to an elbow injury. And Arlington wasn’t at full strength either, playing their third game without 6-1 Ronnie Ladines (broken finger).
Note to softball fans: I’m told Ladines, one of the state’s top pitchers, should make a full recovery and be back on the mound at some point this season.
I was also impressed last night with Kentridge, which gave top-ranked Mount Rainier everything it could handle for three quarters, ultimately falling 69-50. At times, the Rams look like they indeed should be the No. 1 4A team in the state. But at other times, they appear very vulnerable – even with Brittany McPhee, who continues to make some amazing plays.
You can read my story on those two games here.
Second-ranked Mead had no trouble with Puyallup, 67-41, and I’d say the Panthers are co-favorites with Mount Rainier this week. No. 5 Inglemoor is playing awfully well right now, too, and blew past Bellarmine Prep last night, 68-42. No. 4 Gonzaga Prep needed a big fourth quarter to put Union away, 48-39, but will be a team to contend with in Tacoma as well.
I favored Skyline over Yelm last night, but didn’t think it would be easy and it wasn’t as the Spartans didn’t take control until the second half before winning 61-48. You can read about it here. There’s a mention of the Gonzaga Prep game there, too.
Lake Stevens is as dangerous as any team with a lineup that includes Brooke Pahukoa, taped pinky finger and all. The Vikings drilled Davis of Yakima, 54-34, and there’s a brief recap here, which includes a little info on Mead’s victory.
Back to 3A. No. 2 Cleveland is playing with so much confidence right now, I am anxious to see that team make a run at another title. The Eagles destroyed Kelso last night, 73-35. No. 3 Wilson, still buoyed by Monday’s district championship win over Prairie, is also on a high and had no problem with Bonney Lake last night, 56-26. No. 6 Kamiakin coasted past Lakes, 57-33, and could be a team to contend with next week.
Kudos to Mercer Island for handling No. 7 Everett, 57-44. The Islanders have come so far since last year’s 5-15 campaign. Read the game story here, and you’ll also find mention of No. 8 Glacier Peak’s 47-40 win over No. 9 Enumclaw. So, it’s the Grizzlies carrying the WesCo 3A flag to Tacoma.
In 2A, the big upset was No. 9 River Ridge over No. 3 White River, 43-35 – despite Kennedy Hobert’s 15 points. Hobert, remember, was a game-time decision with an injured wrist. I was following tweets and it looked like the Hornets were going to advance, but they were outscored 18-4 in the final quarter.
No. 6 Cedarcrest kept its best-ever season going with a 49-38 win over Port Angeles. And Renton is in the quarterfinals for the first time since 1987 after edging Sumner, 42-40. But No. 7 Archbishop Murphy fell short against No. 2 W.F. West, 47-43.
And here’s one score that had me scratching my head: No. 10 West Valley of Spokane 36, No. 8 Ellensburg 19. Nineteen?????
King’s is headed to the 1A quarterfinals after taking care of Montesano, 47-30. Top-ranked Cascade Christian will be there, too, but University Prep was eliminated by Connell, 40-21.
In 1B, Shoreline Christian stayed hot with a 48-36 win over Mount Rainier Lutheran. Tulalip Heritage lost 42-38 to St. John-Endicott.
There is a roundup of some of those games here.
I’ll be at the draw tomorrow at the WIAA office in Renton, so check back for the quarterfinal pairings.