LYNNWOOD — How deep is the Meadowdale High School boys basketball team?
All 12 players on Meadowdale’s roster played significant minutes Tuesday and nine of them scored, helping the Mavericks build an 18-point fourth-quarter lead en route to a 60-52 victory over the slumping Mariner Marauders.
Guard Paul Werner (14 points) and post Matt Gorman (12 points) led a balanced scoring effort for Meadowdale in the Western Conference South Division clash.
A striking example of Meadowdale’s seemingly endless list of weapons came late in the third quarter. Reserve guard Connor Nelson, the 11th Meadowdale player to get on the court, drained a 3-point basket shortly after entering the game.
It was Nelson’s first shot of the night. His seamless entrance epitomized the main asset for Meadowdale (9-2 Wesco South, 13-2 overall), which won its fifth consecutive game and needs one victory in its final five contests to secure the No. 1 Wesco seed in the Class 3A District 1 tournament.
“We said coming into the season that the strength of our team is our depth. We have 12 guys that can play,” said Meadowdale coach Chad McGuire, whose team trails first-place Edmonds-Woodway (10-2, 13-3) by a half-game in the division.
Meadowdale led 47-29 with 6 minutes, 34 seconds to go. Third-place Mariner (8-4, 11-4) scored 25 points in the final quarter and cut it to 58-52 with 16 seconds remaining. But the Marauders were unable to overcome a horrid shooting night and lost for the third consecutive time.
“Every team goes through this at some point in time during the season,” said Mariner coach Dexter Griffen, whose team was just 2-for-14 from 3-point range. “Sometimes you win those and sometimes you don’t. (But) I’m starting to see some positive signs that we’re getting back on track and starting to execute better.”
Wing Joey Dillon (14 points), guard Danny Chhann (12) and post Damascus Purnell (10) were the high scorers for Mariner.
In the final 2 minutes, the Marauders scored 15 points, including eight on foul shots. That effort, in part, gave Griffen something positive to take from the loss.
“I fully expect by the time we get to the end of the season that we’ll be back on track again,” said Griffen.
With four league games remaining, Mariner is trying to get one of the South’s four 4A District 1 tourney berths.
Meanwhile, Meadowdale already knows it will compete in the postseason. The Mavericks have done it every season since coach McGuire took over the program.
McGuire praised the relentless effort on both ends of the floor by Gorman, the solid game plan prepared by assistant coach Dean Wiley and the unselfishness of his talented, 12-deep squad, which features nine seniors.
“They’re all competitors so obviously they all want to be playing but (they’ve) done a nice job of accepting roles,” said McGuire.
Mariner had eight offensive rebounds in the first half but it shot 5-for-28 from the field (17.9 percent) in the half.
Said Griffen, “Right there, that tells you exactly why we lost the game.”
At Meadowdale H.S.
Mariner — J. Dillon 14, Chhann 12, T. Dillon 8, Malysheff 6, Purnell 10, Bastys, Minor 2, Doerscher, McCollough. Meadowdale — Clampitt 7, Gorman 12, P. Werner 14, O’Neill 10, Matteson 5, Hamlett 2, Beeson 2, Dooley 5, S. Werner, Epstein, Nelson, Church. 3-point goals — Chhann 1, T. Dillon 1, P. Werner 2, Matteson 1, Dooley 1, Nelson 1. JV score — Meadowdale 47, Mariner 37. Records-Mariner 8-4 in division, 11-4 overall. Meadowdale 9-2, 13-2.
Contact Herald Writer Mike Cane at email@example.com. For more high school sports news, check out the prep sports blog Double Team at www.heraldnet.com/doubleteam.