The Snohomish Panthers celebrate their win over Meadowdale during the 3A District 1 semifinals on Wednesday at Marysville Pilchuck High School in Marysville. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

The Snohomish Panthers celebrate their win over Meadowdale during the 3A District 1 semifinals on Wednesday at Marysville Pilchuck High School in Marysville. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Snohomish outlasts Meadowdale in seesaw 3A district semifinal

Tyler Gildersleeve-Stiles pours in 29 points and the state-bound Panthers hit big shots late in a 71-64 victory.

MARYSVILLE — The Snohomish High School girls basketball team knows that Meadowdale can take over games with its 3-point shooting prowess.

The Mavericks nearly clawed back from a double-digit fourth-quarter deficit, but the Panthers had enough fire power to subdue them in a 71-64 victory in a Class 3A District 1 semifinal tilt Wednesday at Marysville Pilchuck High School.

With the win, third-seeded Snohomish (16-5) notched a state berth and advanced to the district title round against top-seeded Arlington (20-2) on Saturday at 8 p.m. at Marysville Pilchuck. Second-seeded Meadowdale (19-4) will play fifth-seeded Everett (15-8) in a winner-to-state, loser-out contest 4 p.m. Saturday at the same site.

“Our girls did a really good job of trying to control the tempo,” Panthers head coach Ken Roberts said. “It’s hard, they make you speed up. They’re such great shooters and we knew that coming in.”

Six-foot junior Tyler Gildersleeve-Stiles held things down for Snohomish, particularly in the first half, when she dropped 20 of her 29 total points.

“I told the girls in practice yesterday that this is one of those games where we’re going go to Tyler and hope she scores 30, that was a part of our game plan,” Roberts said.

Gildersleeve-Stiles, along with Sienna Capelli (17 points) and Addyson Gallatin (11 points), answered the bell in the moments when it seemed like the Panthers’ lead was close to evaporating.

Snohomish’s Tyler Gildersleeve-Stiles gets fouled while trying to score down low against Meadowdale during the 3A District 1 semifinals on Wednesday at Marysville Pilchuck High School in Marysville. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Snohomish’s Tyler Gildersleeve-Stiles gets fouled while trying to score down low against Meadowdale during the 3A District 1 semifinals on Wednesday at Marysville Pilchuck High School in Marysville. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

After a seesaw opening half, Snohomish led 32-28 at intermission. In the second half, the Panthers stretched their lead to as many as 11 points in the third quarter as Gallatin knocked down two key triples to keep Snohomish in front 56-46 after three.

“I think we just kept our cool,” Gildersleeve-Stiles said. “We’ve been in these situations before. So, coming into it we were all really level-headed and when it came down to that big play, everybody was ready to make it.”

In the fourth, Meadowdale’s shots started falling with even more frequency.

Back-to-back treys to open the quarter from Kaiya Dotter and Mia Brockmeyer quickly pulled the Mavericks back to within two possessions at 58-52, and Audrey Lucas scored on a putback lay-in to make it 58-54 with under six minutes remaining.

Star Brown University signee Gia Powell (19 points) followed up by draining one of her six 3s at the 4:33 mark, pulling Meadowdale within one at 58-57 and triggering a Snohomish timeout.

Meadowdale’s Gia Powell tries to get past a defender against Snohomish during the 3A District 1 semifinals on Wednesday at Marysville Pilchuck High School in Marysville. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Meadowdale’s Gia Powell tries to get past a defender against Snohomish during the 3A District 1 semifinals on Wednesday at Marysville Pilchuck High School in Marysville. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Gildersleeve-Stiles responded promptly, muscling in a bucket in the paint and drawing a foul to complete a 3-point play to bring her Panthers ahead 61-57.

She had to respond again, as Powell drilled another 3 with under two minutes left to pull Meadowdale back to within a single point at 63-62.

Gildersleeve-Stiles converted a shot in the key before Dotter scored on a drive for the Mavericks. After Capelli sunk two free throws, Gildersleeve-Stiles came through with another bucket on the following possession, putting Snohomish in front 69-64 with under 30 seconds left.

“It was really, really important,” Gildersleeve-Stiles said of her team’s ability to hit timely shots in the clutch. “Everybody contributed to the win, and I think everybody took the shots they needed to take and it was just how we play Panther basketball.”

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