Yes, we are well aware that the high-school basketball season is upon us.
Josh Liebeskind and I are anxious to dive into it, but with the football state championships this weekend at the Tacoma Dome, we haven’t skipped ahead just yet.
But we wanted to let you know that our state rankings, preseason all-state teams and previews are coming next week. I will once again be spearheading our girls basketball coverage, and Josh will be the point person for boys basketball.
A reminder please to coaches and/or ADs to please get us your rosters and schedules as soon as possible so we can get them up on our website. And be sure to get us your scores and details as soon as possible on game nights by either phone (206-464-2276) or e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org).
There are some great early games we didn’t want you to miss. On the Friday schedule: Garfield at Issaquah and Lakeside at Seattle Prep, both at 8 p.m.
Garfield, third at state last year, is expected to be a major player in 4A this season. Issaquah is also poised to create ripples. We caught up with Garfield coach Ed Haskins to discuss the game. Here’s what he had to say.
“KingCo’s a tough league. People don’t give it enough credit in terms of basketball. Obviously it’s known as a football league. Kingco’s a tough league … [Issaquah’s] Jason [Griffith] a good coach. They have a good team. They have a team that’s battle tested and been together, so their chemistry is strong. They’re always tough, they’re always tough.
“They’ve always been tough every year I’ve been in the league, so it’ll be a tough game for sure.”
Lakeside lost the 3A title game to Rainier Beach, while Seattle Prep placed sixth at state last season. The Lions dropped their opener to O’Dea on Tuesday, 69-51, while Prep ripped Bishop Blanchet, 72-36.
On the girls side, I see a bunch in intriguing games on the schedule for tonight, Wednesday — Mount Rainier at Eastlake, Inglemoor at Glacier Peak, Edmonds-Woodway at Issaquah, Seattle Prep at Blanchet and Lakeside at Holy Names. All I believe have 7:30 p.m. starts.
Mount Rainier features Stanford-bound Brittany McPhee, the two-time Gatorade Player of the Year. The Rams won just 68-62 on their home court last year and went on to place third at state after a hearbreaking, 51-50 loss to eventual-champion Mead in the semifinals.
Inglemoor has 6-5 junior Deja Strother, who already has committed to Washington, and a strong supporting cast. The Vikings placed sixth at state last year and will be a title contender this year. Glacier Peak just missed a 3A trophy last season, and should be in my top-10.
Seattle Prep lost all but one starter from the team that too Cleveland to overtime in the 3A title game — but she’s a good one, Mary Ann Santucci, and coach Michelle Hall always does a great job with that program. Blanchet has some talented freshmen and could be making some noise in Metro this season.
Issaquah was always steady under Kathy Gibson, and it will be interesting to see how the Eagles fare under new coach Bob Richey. E-W was tough lsat season.
The Eagles have another interesting game Friday as part of that quad with the boys. It’s going to be fun to see what Joyce Walker can do with the Garfield girls now that she’s back at the helm.
Holy Names is an annual 3A contender and also has a new coach. Lakeside made another deep run last year and could be in the Metro mix — where of course Cleveland is favored and should be No. 1 in the rankings next week. Be sure to check back.
And there’s the Comfort Inn Tipoff Classic at Auburn Riverside Friday-Saturday featuring three girls games and eight boys games. That’s a lot of bang for your buck. Check our schedule for details.