I might have been wrong about Snohomish

Through all the banter that fellow Herald Writer and friend David Krueger and I have, I have learned two things — It feels really good to be right, and it feels even worse when I have to admit I was wrong.

As to not feed into Mr. Krueger’s ego too much right off the bat. I will start with the positives for me. Before the 4A and 3A District 1 boys and girls basketball tournaments, David and I sat down in a room and recorded a podcast with our Prep Editor Aaron Swaney and fellow writer Jon Saperstein. We made selections on the four brackets. In the four brackets there were a possibility of eight teams to play in the championship games. I have seven of them correct. Seven out of eight isn’t bad, I will certainly take it.

I was right about the Glacier Peak boys and girls, I was right about the Shorecrest girls and I was right about the Jackson girls just to name a few.

But there was one team that I left out of the championship games that I was wrong about — very, very wrong.

David had been heaping praise on the Snohomish Panthers boys basketball team and their star guard Luke Hamlin for much of the season. I just didn’t buy in. I had seen them lose badly to Mountlake Terrace and Jackson and I didn’t see what made them a highly state ranked team. In fairness to myself, I hadn’t seen some of the more impressive victories that they have had this season, only the losses. Still, I was convinced that the depth of the Lake Stevens boys would lead them past Snohomish in the 4A District 1 semifinals and that Lake Stevens would play Jackson for the district championship.

My apologies to Mr. Krueger, Snohomish coach Len Bone and his players.

The Panthers are indeed good —very good.

They dominated Lake Stevens for much of Saturday night’s game and earned a 66-57 victory. After the game I interview Coach Bone. He is always a good interview and he answered my questions politely and accurately. But during the whole interview I couldn’t help but get the vibe that he knew I picked against his team. Maybe I was over-analyzing the situation because I had realized my mistake. But I couldn’t shake the feeling.

To be fair, Bone doesn’t seem like the type of coach who gets too caught up in what media folk like myself have to say. But if he and his players stumbled across our podcasts, read the paper, or looked at the brackets that we picked, they certainly were aware that I picked against them.

I was concerned with the Panthers ability to have other scoring threats besides Hamlin. I was concerned about their depth and I was concerned about their ability to stop team’s that have multiple scorers.

I was wrong on all counts. The Panthers have the ability to do all of those things and they exhibited them all on Saturday night.

With the win, Snohomish has qualified for the state regionals and they play Jackson for the district championship next Saturday night. Before the tournament even started I picked Jackson to win it and I am not going to back off that pick, but after seeing the Panthers play recently, I’m now fully convinced that they could beat Jackson. I also could see this team making noise in the state regionals and getting to the Tacoma Dome. Two weeks ago I didn’t believe any of those things.

As I said, being right is fun and I felt like I was right for much of this tournament. But I also want to have the ability to have humility and admit when I was wrong.

So, not that it matters much or should matter much to you, Coach Bone and Snohomish players, know that I now know that I was wrong and that I’m a believer in what you can accomplish.

Oh yeah, David, I guess I’m sorry too.

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