I wasn’t sure exactly how I would start the first edition of my girls basketball notebook, which I started last season with the tag “Post-Ups” and will run on the prep blog Thursday’s throughout the season.
Then Juanita Agosto went off for 47 points last night – FORTY SEVEN! – to lead young Garfield to a 64-53 victory over Redmond.
That meant a call in to Garfield coach Joyce Walker was in order, and I’ll share her comments with you in this post, and add a few additional notes.
Agosto is a freshman guard that stands about 5-foot-9 “on a good day,” according to Walker. She was already on my radar, and not just because her brother Jashaun is a key player on the top-ranked Garfield boys team.
Juanita went into Wednesday’s game leading KingCo 4A in scoring with a 24.3 average. She poured in 32 points in her debut against the Australians, then followed with games of 23, 17 and 25.
Then this. According to Walker, Juanita hit 16 of 28 field goals and 15 of 20 free throws – “and we needed every basket,” the coach said. Her game went beyond just scoring, too, as she added 14 rebounds (eight on the offensive end), four steals and four assists.
“She can play this game,” said Walker, a 1987 Garfield graduate who knows a thing or two about basketball as a former All-American and Harlem Globetrotter.
“She’s just an amazing kid. She’s one of those kids who comes around every 20 years. She has a mindset that she can get to the basket and she really finishes. She still has a whole lot to evolve as a player, but her moxie, her drive, her focus….I’ve coached some great players over the years, but this kid is just a great finisher.”
And this is just the beginning.
“She’s going to have a nice opportunity at the next level, if she continues to work,” Walker said.
In case you’re wondering how close Agosto came to a school record, it’s easy to check on that. Walker holds it with the 62 she scored her senior year in a tournament in British Columbia. And she’s jokingly told Agosto she plans on keeping it, too.
“I told her if she gets close, I’m pulling her out,” Walker said with a chuckle.
Lynnwood, ranked No. 13 nationally, shows why
OK, so I didn’t necessarily expect the game to be super close. But 60-15? No way I saw that coming when top-ranked Lynnwood played No. 9 Edmonds-Woodway last night.
At first, I thought it might have been a typo. Then I checked the box score. The Warriors – who got their place in the rankings after knocking out Jackson last week – were outscored 23-7 in the first quarter and 20-0 in the second.
We didn’t have anyone at that game, but the Everett Herald did, and you can read more about it here.
And in case you missed it, Lynnwood is ranked No. 13 in the nation by USA Today. Check the complete Super-25 out here.
I was thinking Friday’s game between Lynnwood and Jackson might be entertaining. Now I’m not so sure! Probably nothing like to double-overtime thriller I was treated to Saturday as the Royals edged second-ranked Mount Rainier
Then again Jackson did put up 82 points against Cascade last night – and that was without UW-bound Kelli Kingma. When I didn’t see her name in the box score, I called Coach Mark Haner and hoped it wasn’t more bad news for Kingma, who missed most of last season with a knee injury.
Nope – she just had that bug that has been going around.
“We’re playing it cautious early in the season,” Haner said.
He said Kingma should be ready for Friday’s game.
“We’re hoping she is, but we did have three other guards who put up 66 points so we have a lot of scoring options,” he said. “We’re not going push anyone to play if they’re not ready.”
Faithaleen Lopez-Flores had 28 points against Cascade, while Imari Clinton scored 22 and Sierra Anderson added 16, although she was the focus of a gadget defense. Kingma averaged 26.5 in her first two games.
Did you see these scores, too?
There were some other scores from Wednesday night that caught my attention, too.
* I took a chance on young Bishop Blanchet in this week’s rankings and dropped them in at No. 10. I had a feeling the Braves might give No. 7 Holy Names trouble, and they did, winning 34-27. It was an ugly second quarter, which Blanchet won 6-0 for a 17-10 halftime advantage.
* Inglemoor – a team I thought might be in the top four or five in my 4A rankings before any games were played — continues to struggle. The Vikings dropped to 2-3 with a 47-44 loss to Newport, which is now 5-0. The Knights have had the stingiest defense in KingCo 4A thus far, allowing less than 40 points in each of their last four games.
*Bellevue, which is ranked No. 6 in 3A, posted an 81-65 victory over Lake Washington, rated No. 7 in 2A. Bellevue had four players score in double figures, led by Mandy Steard with 19. LW should be able to hold its own in that KingCo 3A/2A conference – except maybe against Bellevue and third-ranked Juanita – and then look for the Kangs to make a strong post-season run. That should be great game Friday between Juanita and Bellevue.
And on Tuesday, I took note of two games in particular:
* Kentwood’s 60-36 romp over previously unbeaten Auburn Riverside. The Conquerors have bounced back quickly from last week’s loss to Kentridge. But they’ll have their hands full Friday with Mount Rainier, I’m betting.
* And in a battle of unbeatens, 4A Arlington took care of 3A Mountlake Terrace (ranked No. 8), 53-31. I’ve got my eye on the Eagles. They lost a lot to graduation from the team that reached the state championship game last season. But obviously they have big plans for this year’s campaign, too.
That’s it for this first notebook. Check back Monday for new rankings. With the holidays, I’m not sure when I’ll have another edition of Post-Ups, but it will be a regular feature after the start of the new year, at the very least.