And for one Eagle in particular.
Terry Dawn scored 21 points to become Arlington's all-time leading scorer in the Eagles' 80-68 loss to Garfield on Saturday at the Class 4A State Boys Basketball Tournament. Garfield earned third place and Arlington placed fifth, the highest finish in the program's history.
With the Eagles trailing Garfield 54-48 late in the third quarter, Dawn was fouled driving to the basket. He went to the free-throw line for his 18th point of the game, which tied the previous career record of 1,202 points set by Brett Erickson in the 1970s.
Dawn said a tear slid down his cheek as he prepared to make history. His second shot — and 1,203rd point of his career — swished through the net and the record was his.
"It being on the last game of my high school career, it couldn't have happened any better," Dawn said.
The senior added two more points in the game, giving him 1,205 for his career. Dawn, Erickson and Erickson's brother Ross are the only players in Arlington history to score more than 1,000 points in their careers.
After Dawn made the free throw, Arlington coach Nick Brown subbed him out for the first time in the game so that Dawn could receive an ovation from the Arlington fans.
"We wanted to get him out and just let him know that he got it and we're proud of him." Brown said. "Give him a break and then let him go get some more. I'm proud of him. I love that kid."
"(Brown) didn't say anything, he just hugged me," Dawn said. "I'll remember that forever."
Brown knew about the opportunity before the game, which caused a small dilemma for the Arlington coach.
"I kind of worried about that coming in," Brown said. "I saw the (Herald) article. You know, do I worry about getting Terry Dawn a scoring (record) or winning the game? And obviously it's winning a game."
The Eagles were unable to come out on top, but thanks in large part to Dawn, Arlington hung with Garfield (25-2) for the first three quarters, trailing just 54-52 at the end of the third period. But a double-double by Tucker Haymond (24 points, 11 rebounds) and 21 points from Trevaunte Williams helped the Bulldogs, the No. 1-ranked team in 4A, pull away in the final quarter, with Garfield outscoring Arlington 26-16.
"They came out and they battled," Brown said. "To our credit, we hung with them. I think our kids played well. (The Bulldogs) weren't walking around. They were going hard."
Noah Jones had a double-double for Arlington, with 15 points and 10 rebounds. Brady Brummel added 12 points for the Eagles, who led 18-17 at the end of the first quarter.
Arlington finished the year 22-5.
"I'm happy with my team. I'm so proud," Brown said. "I'm elated with my team. I'm just so proud of them. They're such great kids. ... I believe we belonged where we were. In this mix of teams. We belonged in Tacoma this year."
And while his career didn't end with a victory, it ended with a special senior season that Dawn will always remember.
"Once again I can't express enough my feelings for how the school and Arlington, how everyone's came to support me. It's unbelievable," Dawn said. "I can't ask for anymore. It's just a great place to grow up. I'm so happy I grew up here.
"I'm just so happy I'm from Arlington."
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