Jackson’s Ryan Mcferran (0) shoots the ball during a boys game between Jackson and Puyallup at Shorewood High School on Friday, Feb. 23, 2024, in Shoreline, WA. Jackson won, 55-48. (Annie Barker / The Herald)

Jackson’s Ryan Mcferran (0) shoots the ball during a boys game between Jackson and Puyallup at Shorewood High School on Friday, Feb. 23, 2024, in Shoreline, WA. Jackson won, 55-48. (Annie Barker / The Herald)

Jackson boys overcome adversity again, reach round of 12

The Timberwolves survive foul trouble to defeat Puyallup 55-48 in a Class 4A loser-out game.

SHORELINE — The Jackson High School boys basketball team is no stranger to adversity.

While in the thick of the battle for the Wesco 4A title earlier this season, the Timberwolves suffered a 33-point blowout against eventual league champion Glacier Peak that capped a potentially season-altering four-game slide. They bounced back by winning their next four and eventually punched a ticket to state regionals in a win-or-go-home district tournament matchup.

Jackson faced adversity again Friday night, and once again overcame.

Trey Hawkins scored 15 of his game-high 19 points in the second half, and 10th-seeded Jackson navigated most of the final two quarters without standout senior post Ryan Mcferran, topping 15th-seeded Puyallup 55-48 in a loser-out Class 4A state regionals contest at Shorewood High School.

“That’s kind of a microcosm of the whole season,” Timberwolves coach Steve Johnson said. “You’re kind of down and now what do you do? That’s a great way to win. I feel bad for Ryan, because he’s been so huge, to be taken out of the game, but boy it sure says a lot about our boys that they can come through and rally like that.”

The Timberwolves (17-9) advanced to a loser-out game in the round of 12 at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday at the Tacoma Dome. They face the loser of Saturday’s matchup between No. 2 Tahoma and No. 7 Richland.

“Very excited,” Hawkins said. “(Playing at the Tacoma Dome) will be a fun experience.”

Mcferran carried the load early for Jackson, using his 6-foot-7 frame to gobble up rebounds and provide buckets in the paint. He finished the first half with eight points and 11 rebounds, but picked up his fourth foul in the opening minutes of the third quarter with his team trailing 29-28.

With Mcferran on the bench, Hawkins provided the spark the Timberwolves needed. The senior guard scored Jackson’s next six points and 12 of 14 in the third to build a slim 42-38 cushion entering the final period.

Puyallup (16-11) pulled back within 45-44 on Drew Jones’ putback early in the fourth. Mcferran and sophomore Seamus Williams answered back with buckets to push Jackson’s lead to five, but Mcferran received his fifth foul with 3:05 to go.

Jackson was able to maintain its cushion, and Hawkins splashed a 3-pointer with 31 seconds remaining for a 54-46 lead that closed the door on Puyallup.

“He’s such a great kid and cares so much about the program,” Johnson said of Hawkins. “… For him to step up and make some of those big plays is huge.”

Hawkins added eight rebounds, Mcferran finished with 10 points and 13 rebounds, and Williams scored six of 10 points in the final quarter for Jackson.

Isaiah Sonntag, Will Nasinec and Jones scored 11 points apiece to pace Puyallup.

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