District and bi-district basketball tournaments tip off this week for boys basketball squads around Snohomish County.
Berths to state regionals are limited this season with just four spots for Class 4A teams and three apiece for 3A and 2A squads.
Below is a primer the district and bi-district tournaments involving local teams, with a look at the seeding, tournament formats and tournament favorites, contenders and sleepers. All rankings are in reference to the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association’s Ratings Percentage Index, as of Wednesday afternoon:
4A Wes-King Bi-District
Teams : 12
State berths: 4
Format: Wesco seeds 1-2 and KingCo seeds 1-2 receive first-round byes into the quarterfinals. Wesco seeds 3-6 and KingCo seeds 3-6 square off in four loser-out games, with the winners advancing to the quarterfinals. From there, the tournament takes on a double-elimination format.
Wesco seeding: 1. Glacier Peak, 2. Mariner, 3. Jackson, 4. Kamiak, 5. Lake Stevens, 6. Mount Vernon
KingCo seeding: 1. Mount Si, 2. Skyline, 3. Inglemoor, 4. Redmond, 5. Woodinville, 6. Eastlake
Mount Si: The KingCo 4A Tournament champion Wildcats (19-3, 13-0 KingCo 4A) are led by the talented senior guard duo of Jabe Mullins, a Saint Mary’s University commit, and Tyler Patterson, a Montana State signee. The 6-foot-6 Mullins (19.4 points per game) and 6-foot-7 Patterson (16.5) combine to average 35.9 points per game and are just two of seven players listed at 6-foot-6 or taller on the Mount Si roster. The Wildcats, winners of 15 straight, are besting opponents by a staggering 22 points per game. Their only in-state loss this season came against unbeaten Union, the top-ranked 4A team. Mount Si claimed last year’s bi-district title with consecutive wins over top Wesco squads Mariner, Glacier Peak and Jackson. Coming off a runner-up finish at the 2019 4A Hardwood Classic, the third-ranked Wildcats appear primed for another deep postseason run.
Glacier Peak: The unbeaten Grizzlies (20-0, 14-0 Wesco 4A) navigated a very competitive Wesco 4A this season with few scares along the way to a third conference championship in four seasons since moving up from 3A to 4A at the start of the 2016-17 school year. Glacier Peak, one of only two remaining undefeated 4A teams in the state, features a balanced offensive attack with a handful of capable scorers and a stingy defense that allowed a league-best 43.1 points per game. Glacier Peak has won all but three games by double figures this season with an eye-popping average margin of victory of 24.4 points. The second-ranked Grizzlies are in search of their fourth straight state berth and eighth appearance overall in the program’s 12th season of existence.
Mariner: After posting their highest win total in over 10 years, the Marauders (16-4, 11-3 Wesco 4A) are searching for a second straight state regional appearance after breaking a decade-long drought last season. Junior forward Henry Avra leads No. 11 Mariner’s balanced scoring attack that averages 65.6 points per game and the Marauders’ defense allows just 52.2 points per contest, both second in Wesco 4A. Mariner’s four losses this season have come by a combined 12 points, including a pair of losses to unbeaten Glacier Peak after holding double-digit leads in the second half. The Marauders’ path to a bi-district title comes with a likely semifinal showdown with Mount Si.
Skyline: The 15th-ranked Spartans (16-6, 10-3 KingCo 4A) finished second to Mount Si in the KingCo 4A Crest Division standings and three of their four in-state losses came to the Wildcats, including a 54-33 thumping in the KingCo championship game. Junior point guard Kauner Przybylski leads Skyline with 15.2 points per game and senior small forward Cole Fontenelle adds 12.9 points per contest to an offense that averages 61.7 points per game.
Redmond: The Mustangs (15-7, 9-4 KingCo 4A) have already posted their most wins in a season since 2011-12 on their way to a KingCo 4A Crown Division title. Redmond’s 48.9 points per game allowed is second to only Mount Si in all of KingCo 4A. The No. 17 Mustangs are in search of their first state berth since placing fifth in 2009.
Inglemoor: The senior-heavy Vikings (14-8, 8-5 KingCo 4A) feature a quartet of double-figure scorers and hold a pair of victories over Crown Division champion Redmond, including a 63-57 win in the KingCo 4A Tournament third-place game. Inglemoor fell one win shy of a state appearance last season.
Jackson: The Timberwolves (12-8, 8-6 Wesco 4A) took Wesco 4A champion Glacier Peak down to the wire in a 54-51 loss on Feb. 5 and they own a solid non-league win of bi-district contender Inglemoor. Versatile 6-foot-7 senior wing Jaylen Searles provides a tough defensive matchup for opponents and could be the difference-maker if Jackson can string together a few upsets.
3A Northwest District Tournament
State berths: 3
Format: Seeding is determined by a district-wide RPI. The top six seeds receive first-round byes into the quarterfinals. Seeds 7-10 square off in a pair of loser-out games, with the winners advancing to the quarterfinals. From there, the tournament takes on a double-elimination format.
Seeding: 1. Marysville Pilchuck, 2. Stanwood, 3. Shorecrest, 4. Edmonds-Woodway, 5. Meadowdale, 6. Marysville Getchell, 7. Arlington, 8. Squalicum, 9. Shorewood, 10. Ferndale
Marysville Pilchuck: Coming off a program-best fourth-place finish at the 3A Hardwood Classic, the No. 3 Tomahawks (18-2, 14-0 Wesco 3A/2A) haven’t skipped a beat on their way to a second straight league championship — despite the graduation of star guard RaeQuan Battle. The senior-laden Marysville Pilchuck squad is led by the quartet of guards Luke Dobler and Cameron Stordahl, wing Aaron Kalab and post Ethan Jackson, who have all posted at least one 20-point game this season. Marysville Pilchuck leads the conference in scoring at 68.4 points per contest and points allowed at 53.1 per game. The Tomahawks have won 33 straight games against Wesco 3A/2A teams, including the postseason.
Stanwood: The Spartans (15-5, 11-3 Wesco 3A/2A) are coming off three losses in their past four games after a 14-2 start. Stanwood is led by the sharp-shooting tandem of junior guards, Cort Roberson and Jake Cleary, who average nearly 20 points per game apiece. No. 12 Stanwood has eclipsed 70 points eight times and their 66.2 points per contest is second to only Marysville Pilchuck in Wesco 3A/2A. Stanwood is in search of its eighth consecutive state regional berth.
Shorecrest: The Scots (16-4, 10-4 Wesco 3A/2A) have been red-hot during an eight-game winning streak that includes consecutive single-possession victories over Meadowdale, Stanwood and Edmonds-Woodway. Shorecrest finished tied for third in the conference this season despite a 3-4 start to league play. Elijah Johnson, a 5-foot-9 sophomore guard, sparks a Scots offense that’s averaging 68.3 points per contest over its eight-game winning streak. No. 13 Shorecrest is also in search of an eighth straight state regional appearance.
Edmonds-Woodway: Standout senior guard Mutdung Bol averages over 15 points per game and is on the area’s top all-around players. He leads the Warriors (14-6, 10-4 Wesco 3A/2A) as they look for their first state regional berth since 2017. No. 18 Edmonds-Woodway won 10 of their final 12 league games to finish tied for third in Wesco 3A/2A after falling to Stanwood and Marysville Pilchuck to start conference play. The Warriors open the district tournament with a chance to avenge 64-53 loss to Edmonds School District rival Meadowdale in January.
Marysville Getchell: After achieving the first winning regular season in program history last year, the Chargers (13-7, 9-4 Wesco 3A/2A) have quietly improved for another landmark campaign. Do-it-all junior point guard Malakhi Knight averages a whopping 25.7 points per game and provides Marysville Getchell with the area’s premier scoring threat. The 6-foot-4 Knight is well over 1,000 career points after three seasons as a varsity starter. The Chargers took inner-city rival Marysville Pilchuck down to the wire in a 61-57 loss on Jan. 31 and enter the district tournament having won four straight games by 19 points or more. The key for Marysville Getchell — in search of its first-ever state regional berth — will be to find consistent production to compliment Knight.
Meadowdale: The Mavericks (11-9, 9-4 Wesco 3A/2A) achieved their first above .500 regular season since the 2009-10 campaign while posting some of the more impressive performances from Wesco 3A/2A teams. Meadowdale earned an signature non-league win over Mariner, picked up solid conference victories over Edmonds-Woodway and Mountlake Terrace and nearly topped top-ranked 2A squad Burlington-Edison in a non-conference game to open the season. But the Mavericks have also had a few hiccups along the way. Both of their impressive non-league outing were followed by blowout losses to Mount Vernon and Squalicum and the Mavericks fell to Archbishop Murphy, seeded 10th in the 2A bi-district tournament, in their regular season finale. Senior forward Colton Walsh (17.1 points per game) anchors the post for Meadowdale and senior point guard Hunter Moen (14.8) provides a playmaking threat outside.
2A NORTHWEST/SEA-KING BI-DISTRICT TOURNAMENT
State berths: 3
Format: Seeding is determined by a bi-district RPI. The top four seeds receive first-round byes into the quarterfinals. Seeds 5-12 square off in four loser-out games, with the winners advancing to the quarterfinals. From there, the tournament takes on a double-elimination format.
Seeding: 1. Burlington-Edison, 2. Lynden, 3. Mountlake Terrace, 4. Lakewood, 5. Liberty, 6. Anacortes, 7. Cedarcrest, 8. Blaine, 9. Sehome, 10. Archbishop Murphy, 11. Sedro-Woolley, 12. Sammamish
Burlington-Edison: The top-ranked Tigers (19-1, 13-0 Northwest Conference) won all but one of their 13 contests in the ultra-tough Northwest Conference by at least nine points, which includes impressive victories over No. 2 Lynden and fifth-ranked 1A squad Lynden Christian. The season-ending victory over Lynden gave the Tigers their first-ever outright Northwest Conference title. Burlington-Edison took down No. 7 Port Angeles in a non-league bout and also holds six wins against schools in larger classifications. The Tigers are in search of their third straight state regional berth.
Lynden: The two-time defending state champion Lions (18-2, 12-1) have seemingly reloaded despite graduating 10 seniors from last year’s team. Second-ranked Lynden’s only losses are to Burlington-Edison and 3A No. 9 Gig Harbor. The Lions outscored opponents by a league-best 17.5 points per game and their 51.8 points allowed also led the conference. Lynden is in search of its ninth consecutive trip to the state regionals, a third straight state title and a second consecutive bi-district championship.
Mountlake Terrace: Five different players average eight points per game or more for the 11th-ranked Hawks (15-5, 10-4), who have topped 70 points nine times this season with a well-rounded offensive attack. Mountlake Terrace’s plus-15.1 average point differential was tied for tops in Wesco 3A/2A and its five losses came by just 17 combined points.
Lakewood: Four-year starting point guard and career points and steals leader Alex Jensen highlights a senior-heavy Cougars team. The Cougars (12-8, 9-4) finished fourth in the Northwest Conference and have topped 80 points six times on their way to scoring 69.7 points per game. Jensen is one of five players that averages eight or more points per contest.
Liberty: The Patriots (15-5, 8-4 KingCo 3A/2A) finished third in their league and boast an offense that averages 65.1 points per game. Liberty enters the bi-district tournament as the fifth seed, but actually is ranked ahead of fourth-seeded Lakewood in the state RPI. The path through districts for the Patriots includes an extra game since they were seeded outside of the top four. Liberty will have to get by league foe Sammamish in the tournament’s loser out round. The Totems split a pair of matchups with Liberty this season.