By David Krueger Herald Writer
All games on Tuesday, Shorecrest at Everett, 7 p.m., Marysville Pilchuck at Glacier Peak, 7 p.m., Ferndale at Mountlake Terrace, 7 p.m., Shorewood at Stanwood, 7 p.m.
Stanwood finished the regular season with a 20-0 record – the Spartans’ first undefeated regular season since 1948 – and as the No. 2-ranked team in the Associated Press 3A state poll, right behind nationally ranked Rainier Beach. Last season, Stanwood won the district tournament and was rewarded with a tough draw in the regional round of the state tournament. The Spartans were matched up with Franklin, which beat Stanwood 76-64.
Franklin went on to place fifth in the state tournament.
Stanwood has beaten every team in this district tournament, including the entire Wesco 3A South, where all five teams finished with .500 or better overall records.
DARK HORSE: SHORECREST
Shorecrest finished third in the deep Wesco 3A South, just one game behind Mountlake Terrace and Glacier Peak. The Scots open district play against Everett, a team they had no trouble with in the regular season when Shorecrest defeated the Seagulls 62-49.
If Shorecrest can get past Everett, the Scots could face Wesco 3A champion Glacier Peak. The Scots are quite familiar with the Grizzlies, splitting their two regular-season contests with Glacier Peak, with each team winning at home.
It’s likely the third meeting could be at a neutral site – Jackson High School – with a state berth and a spot in the district title game on the line. Shorecrest forwards Alex Hofstrand and Masamba Njadoe, who both average double-digit scoring, could be key in upsetting the Grizzlies.
DID YOU KNOW?
After starting league play 0-5, the Shorecrest Scots won their final eight league games to grab the No. 3 seed and a game against Everett.
PLAYER TO WATCH
Trey Chambers, G, Glacier Peak
Chambers is one of two players on the Glacier Peak varsity who returned from a year ago. Along with Ty Kjellesvik, Chambers has been called upon to lead his Grizzlies’ teammates and be a calming presence in big games.
Glacier Peak’s sixth man off the bench last year, Chambers has been thrust into a scoring role this season and has thrived. He leads the Grizzlies, averaging about 17 points per game, the third-highest average in the Wesco 3A South.
After being picked last in The Herald’s preseason coaches poll, the Grizzlies used that as motivation. After finishing tied for the Wesco 3A South title with Mountlake Terrace – earning the No. 1 seed by a preseason draw – Glacier Peak is right back where it always seems to be this time of year: contending for a district title.
GAME WE WANT TO SEE
Stanwood vs. Mountlake Terrace
Rarely is a 20-0 team not a lock to win a district tournament, and while Stanwood is the favorite heading in, the Spartans have their work cut out for them. Stanwood hosts Shorewood in its first district game, setting up a potential matchup with Mountlake Terrace in the semifinals.
Terrace plays Ferndale (5-7 in the Northwest Conference, 8-12 overall) in the opening round of the district tournament. The Golden Eagles struggled in a league where they’re the only 3A team, finishing in the bottom half of the conference.
Stanwood barely edged out the Hawks, 63-61, when the two teams met on Jan. 17, needing a basket in the final minute of the game to keep its undefeated season alive.
Imagine the excitement of a rematch with a state berth on the line.
Stanwood wins its second district title over Glacier Peak, with both teams qualifying for state. Mountlake Terrace takes the No. 3 seed out of districts. Shorecrest could also be a No. 3 seed out of districts. We have no idea who the Nos. 2 and 3 seeds will be, but we’re quite certain they will be Wesco South teams.