SNOHOMISH — How does it feel to make school history, coach?
“It’s still unreal. Ask me again tomorrow. I have no idea right now. I don’t know how to explain it,” said Ed Wissing.
Don’t blame Wissing, Shorecrest High School’s girls basketball coach, for having trouble describing what happened Thursday night. After all, it was something his program had never done.
Using pesky defensive pressure and balanced scoring, the Shorecrest Scots outscored the Lynnwood Royals 34-26 in the second half and prevailed 54-44 in the Class 3A District 1 girls basketball tournament championship game at Glacier Peak H.S.
Sophomore guard Shannon Schachle (13 points, two 3-pointers) and sophomore post India Matheson (12 points) propelled Shorecrest (17-7), which earned the district’s No. 1 seed for the 3A state tournament, which begins Wednesday at the Tacoma Dome. It is the first district title and the first state berth in the history of Shorecrest’s program, which started in 1976.
Although Shorecrest has only one senior (guard Casey Axelson) it often plays like a veteran squad. Its seven sophomores have gotten to know each other well from non-high school competition.
“All of our sophomores have been playing together on a select team for a really long time,” said Schachle, who scored 11 points in the pivotal second half, “so it makes our team a lot closer. Our team chemistry is really good.”
Lynnwood (13-12) can still advance to state. It will play Glacier Peak (15-10) in a loser-out, winner-to-state game at 8 p.m. Saturday at Glacier Peak High.
Senior Laycee Hill scored a team-high 12 points for Lynnwood, which hasn’t been to state since 1994.
This was Lynnwood and Shorecrest’s third meeting this season. They split their two Western Conference South Division games. Shorecrest won 57-49 on Dec. 16 at Lynnwood High. The Royals prevailed 44-36 over Shorecrest Jan. 27 in Shoreline.
Despite committing 14 turnovers in the first half, Lynnwood went to halftime behind by just two points (20-18). Hill (eight points, two 3s) was the Royals’ top scorer. Shorecrest was more balanced as three players scored at least four points, led by Matheson (six points) in the paint.
Shorecrest used full-court pressure defense to hassle Lynnwood throughout the half, especially in the first quarter when the Royals had eight turnovers and rarely attempted a shot. Shorecrest generated a 7-0 scoring burst in the second quarter to take a 17-12 lead. Janie Uppinghouse started the run with a 3-pointer from the right wing and capped it with a long 2-point shot from the middle.
Lynnwood responded though and cut the deficit to 20-18 by halftime.
In the third quarter, Shorecrest took control. After falling behind 25-22, the Scots outscored Lynnwood 16-5 the rest of the period. Five players scored at least two points in Shorecrest’s 18-point third quarter. Schachle hit two 3s during the spurt.
Shorecrest didn’t let up in the fourth quarter and led by double digits most of the period. The Scots struggled at the foul line all game but made enough down the stretch to maintain a commanding cushion.
Asked how Shorecrest was able to end its state drought that lasted about 33 years, second-year Scots head coach Wissing said it came down to perspective.
“With a lot of Shorecrest teams that have come through, they probably had been focused the whole time on, ‘We want to make state. We want to make state,’” he said.
“With our girls,” Wissing added, “they really did a good job of stressing this year, ‘We’re focusing on right now.’”
“I think it paid off,” he said.
At Glacier Peak H.S.
LynnwoodCross 6, Hill 12, Evans 5, Fajemisin 7, Parker 9, Wilson 3, Hella 2, Ruiz, Gahan, Almacen, Murphy. ShorecrestAxelson 2, Schrote 9, Lasconia 4, Uppinghouse 5, Matheson 12, Schachle 13, Greenburg 1, Tulee 8, Jarvis, Ruhlman. 3-point goalsHill 2, Evans 1, Parker 2, Uppinghouse, Tulee. RecordsLynnwood 13-12. Shorecrest 17-7.
Glacier Peak 57, Ferndale 55 (OT): At Snohomish, the Glacier Peak Grizzlies won another close loser-out 3A District 1 girls basketball tournament game to keep their season alive. Sophomore guard Katie Hawkins (18 points, two 3-pointers) and senior guard Hannah Freitas (nine points, all on 3s) ignited Glacier Peak, which tied it at 45-45 late in regulation and then outscored Ferndale 12-10 in overtime.
Glacier Peak plays Lynnwood in a winner-to-state, loser-out game at 8 p.m. Saturday at Glacier Peak High.
Glacier Peaks Becca Smith, a junior guard/forward, made two free throws with 11.9 seconds to go in the fourth quarter to force OT. In the extra four-minute session, the Grizzlies overcame a 55-54 deficit in the final minute and held off Ferndale, which beat Glacier Peak 56-52 in a first-round district game on Feb. 24.
At Glacier Peak H.S.
Glacier PeakGranger 2, Hawkins 18, B. Smith 7, Rasmussen 7, Hill, VanDlac 7, Gere 2, Freitas 9, Weathersby 5. FerndaleHart 9, Goode 6, Marks, Locker 6, Nicolaas 18, Locker 12, Sigurdson 4, Flores, Knutson, Bates. 3-point goals-Hawkins 2, Freitas 3, Weathersby 1, Locker 2. RecordsGlacier Peak 15-10. Ferndale 14-10.
Mike Cane: firstname.lastname@example.org. Check out the prep sports blog Double Team at www.heraldnet.com/doubleteam.