MARYSVILLE — Not even an inter-city rivalry game and a dominant performance from one of Wesco’s finest scorers could blemish Marysville Pilchuck’s perfect league record.
Marysville Getchell gave the Tomahawks all they could handle, but MP leaned on its veteran leaders in the final moments to extend its win streak to nine games.
Searching for a key road win, the Chargers hung with the Tomahawks throughout, and received a huge performance from junior standout guard Malakhi Knight. Marysville Getchell twice tied the game in the fourth quarter, but MP seniors Aaron Kalab, Cameron Stordahl, Luke Dobler, Ethan Jackson and Brady Phelps made key plays in the final minutes to help the Tomahawks secure a 61-57 Wesco 3A/2A win over Marysville Getchell on Friday night at a rowdy Marysville Pilchuck High School.
“These really close games down the stretch, that’s what the playoffs are like,” MP coach Bary Gould said. “So to have that with the playoffs looming and still come out with a W and do it in front of really all of Marysville is pretty cool and pretty special.”
Kalab led the Tomahawks (15-2, 11-0 Wesco 3A/2A) with 18 points and played a tremendous second half. Stordahl added 16 points and brought a ton of energy, and Jackson chipped in 14.
Although MP finished with a win, they never could solve Knight, who scored a game-high 34 points with seven rebounds, three assists and three steals. The junior kept the Chargers in the game, making big shot after big shot while showcasing his ability to score from deep, at the rim and from mid-range.
“He’s a special, insane, sensational athlete,” said Gould of Knight. “Some of the shots he hit, you just go, ‘It was contested.’ He was posting us up. I mean, he’s a very, very special athlete.”
Marysville Getchell junior guard Josiah Koellmer made three 3-pointers, complimenting Knight with 10 points. Besides Knight and Koellmer, the Chargers (9-7, 5-5) struggled to match Pilchuck’s scoring options.
The Tomahawks started at a break-neck pace, finishing with 22 points through the game’s first eight minutes, but only five second-quarter points allowed the Chargers to bounce back and tie the game at halftime, 27-27.
Pilchuck tried to pull away in the third quarter with Kalab scoring eight of his 18 points, but each time the Tomahawks took a two- or three-possession lead, Knight and the Chargers responded with points.
Stordahl made a ridiculous step-back, fadeaway 3 just before the third-quarter buzzer sounded to put Marysville Pilchuck in front 47-43, setting up a tense final eight minutes.
The Tomahawks quickly went up 49-43 before Getchell reeled off six straight points to tie the game at 49-49 with 5:35 to go. Koellmer drained a clutch 3 with 2:44 to play to tie again at 53-53.
With just over a minute remaining, Knight scored his 34th point to cut MP’s lead to 57-55, but Getchell couldn’t make a game-changing shot during the final minute. Kalab and Dobler put the game away with two clutch free throws each inside the final 23 seconds.