Washington State 3A Outlook
Katie Grad of Riverside
Katie Grad of Riverside
HoopGurlz Publisher
Posted Mar 4, 2007

Three super teams have a shot at winning the Washington State 3A tournament; we just wish it were an even four.

Just to get this off my chest, so we can talk about basketball the rest of the week: While I admire the basketball accomplishments of all its girls, still I don't believe Chief Sealth should be in this tournament because I don't understand what lessons should have learned. That you can cheat and have someone (or someones) take the fall and life goes on for the rest of you? Correct me if I'm wrong but, in their minds, the Sealth players won two straight titles and this year could win a third. Sure, they don't have the trophies, but the players never get to keep the trophies anyway.

They get to keep the memories.

State 3A Rankings
(Click on Team for Capsule)
1. Auburn Riverside
2. Chief Sealth
3. Meadowdale
4. Bellevue
5. Seattle Prep
6. Issaquah
7. Skyline
8. White River
9. Lakes
10. East Valley
11. Auburn Mountainview
12. Kennedy
13. Hudson's Bay
14. Capital
15. West Valley
16. Mount Vernon
That's important, because memories seem to be running short. There is a major program in this region that is widely suspected of illegal recruiting, but there's no real deterrent against it because, well, you still get to keep the memories. Political correctness, people's fear of being wrong and the fact that there has not yet been a payoff will buy that program some time.

Maybe those coaches will figure out how to get away with it in the meantime.

Back to basketball, this tournament could have been a lot more memorable, but Seattle Prep went and screwed it up. By stumbling in district play, the Panthers had to win a loser-out game just to claim Sea-King's fifth seed, which bought them a possible second-round matchup with Sealth. Granted, Prep is 0-2 against Sealth this year, but the Panthers have played the Seahawks tougher than anyone in the state has this year, winning the last three quarters in their district clash.

Prep has a couple elements that none of the other contenders possess - depth inside and a creative, athletic scorer in Jasmine Williams. It would have been nice for the Panthers to have built up to, say, a semifinal matchup. Instead, they instantly have to cure some of the dysfunction that has plagued them all season and that's a far less likely development in girls basketball than boys.

Skyline, another contender for favorite status, lost KingCo 3A Player of the Year Madison Maloney, effectively snuffing its title hopes. How huge a loss was that? Consider that last year a team that played tough defense and featured the KingCo Player of the Year (Issaquah, for those with short memories) pushed Sealth to the brink last year.

As University did last week, Sealth seems to have a ticket to the championship game. The quadrant above is has a combined .609 winning percentage and will produce a so-so challenger in the semifinal. Teams that don't draw a challenging path to the finals tend to have a difficult time under the bright lights, which is the main reason we are not giving Sealth the best shot at taking this.

We're giving Auburn Riverside that nod because the Ravens have the most difficult path, but also have the widest arsenal of any team in the tournament. They should meet unbeaten Meadowdale in the semis, which should be a donnybrook, the equivalent of the Kentwood-Lewis and Clark semi in 4A. Riverside has more size than Meadowdale, but coach Dan Taylor has had his team practicing against boys all year, plus the Mavs know Jackson beat Riverside and they've twice beaten Jackson, which placed eighth at 4A.

On the other hand, Katie Grad got into a real groove when Arizona State-bound Stephanie Wilber went down with a stress fracture, and now Wilber is back. Plus Riverside has one of the more extraordinary passers anywhere in sophomore Nichole Jackson, the ultra-athletic German exchange student Ireti Amojo, freshman sensation Mercedes Wetmore, great depth and commitment to defense, and the strongest non-league schedule possible without having to join the Pac-10.

No, I'm not predicting who will win that game, or the subsequent championship matchup against Sealth. A coin will give you better answers than I will.

As I did last week, I ranked teams based on a combination of strength and opportunity presented by the bracket draw.

Auburn Mountainview Lions
Bi-District, 16-9

11 Kady Seward, Sr., 5-6
5 Nicole Ball, Jr., 5-6
13 Mallory Theisen, Jr., 5-7
14 Alix Martinet, Sr., 5-6
20 Kirsten Fausko, Jr., 5-10
21 Kandyce Prigget, Jr., 5-8
22 Nicole Claudon, Sr., 5-10
23 Kate Herren, Sr., 5-8
15 Stephanie Smolinski, Fr., 6-0
32 Chioma Amaefule, Sr., 5-11
24 Michele Mallow, Jr., 6-1

Leading Scorers: Kirsten Fausko, 11.4; Kady Seward, 10.7

Coach: Chris Carr

Tourney Cred: 1-1 vs. White River, 0-1 vs. Capital, 0-2 vs. Auburn Riverside, lost to Kentwood (4A tournament team)

Outlook: Tournament-savvy Carr is building a program and this is an important step.

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Auburn Riverside Ravens
Bi-District, 23-2

1 Mercedes Wetmore, Fr., 5-7
2 Ireti Amojo, Jr., 5-10
10 Katie Grad, Jr., 5-8
11 Gina Hagerty, Jr., 5-4
15 Kara Jenkins, Fr., 5-8
21 Nichole Jackson, So., 5-9
24 Stephanie Wilber, Sr., 6-1
31 Taylor Wofford, Fr., 5-8
32 Rachel Givens, Jr., 5-6
33 Randi Raiford, Jr., 5-6
45 Stephanie Egwuatu, Jr., 5-11

Leading Scorers: Stephanie Wilber 20.5; Katie Grad, 17.1

Coach: Adam Barrett

Tourney Cred: 3-0 vs. White River, 2-0 vs. Auburn Mountainview, 1-0 vs. Kennedy, 1-0 vs. Lakes, beat Lake Stevens (4A tournament team), beat Villa Park (Calif.), beat Sacramento (Calif.), lost to Jackson (4A tournament team), lost to Redondo Union (Calif.)

Outlook: The Ravens have more weapons to account for than any team in the tourney, including Sealth.

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Bellevue Wolverines
Sea-King, 16-10

3 Alyssa Gilbert, Fr., 5-7
5 Catelyn Webber, Fr., 5-8
10 Taylor Brazen, Fr., 5-9
11 Alexis Kinney, Jr., 5-4
13 Alexa Linger, Sr., 5-9
20 Carly Ratcliffe, Sr., 5-10
21 Cody Brazen, Sr., 6-1
23 Jenika Swanson, Jr., 5-10
24 Joey Brazen, Jr., 5-10
32 Stephanie Frederick, So., 5-10
33 Emilie Gilbert, So., 5-8
44 Robin Leitzke, Jr., 6-4

Leading Scorers: Cody Brazen, 12.4; Joey Brazen, 12.1

Coach: Bill Kelley

Tourney Cred: 1-0 vs. Seattle Prep, 0-3 vs. Issaquah, 0-3 vs. Skyline

Outlook: This is a team that never quits in a wide-open quarter bracket.

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Capital Cougars
Bi-District, 18-7

2 Tosha Hollingsworth, Fr., 5-6
4 Taylor Beebe, Jr., 5-2
10 10 Kassy Williamson, So., 5-4
12 Brianna Morkert-Burling, Jr., 5-8
14 Sasha Barnes, Sr., 5-7
20 Alexandra Isoz, Sr., 5-4
21 Jena Russell, Jr., 5-10
24 Brenna Peterson, So., 5-10
30 Kelly Myers, Sr., 6-1
40 Ayla Mull, Jr., 5-7
42 Katy Duran, Sr., 5-7
44 Julie Schade, Jr., 5-10

Leading Scorers: Katy Duran, 11.1; Jena Russell, 10.2

Coach: Colleen Wells

Tourney Cred: 1-0 vs. Auburn Mountainview, 1-0 vs. Kennedy, 0-1 vs. Lakes, 0-1 vs. White River

Outlook: Small team could compete with a Skyline team missing its star.

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Chief Sealth Seahawks
Sea-King, 22-3

3 Kylie Schoenbachler, Jr., 5-6
11 Kayla Johnson, Jr., 5-6
14 Christina Nzekwe, Sr., 6-4
20 Charmaine Barlow, Jr., 5-10
21 Desiree Valentine, Sr., 6-1
23 Shacolby Jenkins, Fr., 5-8
25 Shaneya Valdez, Sr., 5-7
32 Nia Jackson, Sr., 5-6
34 Regina Rogers, Sr., 6-4
44 Ashanii Jenkins, Sr., 5-0
50 Cassie Fontenot, Jr., 6-3
54 Madeline Jacob, Sr., 6-0

Leading Scorers: Regina Rogers, 16.3; Nia Jackson, 14.1

Coach: Carmen Martinez

Tourney Cred: 2-0 vs. Seattle Prep, 1-0 vs. Issaquah, 1-0 vs. Skyline, 1-2 at Nike TOC

Outlook: Regina Rogers, plus something to prove is a dangerous combination.

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East Valley Knights
Eastern, 10-14

10 10 Morgan Manchester, So., 5-6
12 Kelsi Jacobson, So., 5-8
14 Mallory Mott, So., 5-6
20 Ashley Grater, Sr., 5-8
22 Kylee Williamson, Sr., 5-9
24 Eleaya Schuerch, Sr., 5-7
30 Bryana Manchester, Jr., 5-6
32 Olivia Parvey, Sr., 5-7
34 Tiffany Bittner, Sr., 5-10
40 Kristie Burger, JS., 5-10
42 Janea Knopp, So., 5-9
50 Kathy Tate, Jr., 5-10

Leading Scorers: Eleaya Schuerch

Coach: Freddie Rehkow

Tourney Cred: 0-1 vs. West Valley

Outlook: The Knights' record is deceiving as they play in the GSL, which proved to be the best 4A league in the state.

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Hudson's Bay Eagles

2 Dijana Topalovic, Jr., 5-7
4 Amber Sylvester, Sr., 5-5
10 10 Amanda Szuck, Sr., 5-8
12 Ruby Albright, Jr., 5-3
14 Amanda Meadows, Sr., 5-10
20 Lissette Santiago, Jr., 5-4
22 Roseanne Mikaele, So., 5-4
24 LaTanya Johnson, Jr., 5-7
30 Ramona Vercher, Fr., 5-
32 Jazmine Foreman, Sr., 5-5
34 Jessica Jackson, Sr., 5-9
40 Alex Chamberlain, Sr., 6-0

Leading Scorers: Jazmine Foreman, 18.9; Amber Sylvester, 8.9

Coach: Art Rojas

Tourney Cred: 1-0 vs. Kennedy

Outlook: Foreman can help them get into the second round, but that means Meadowdale.

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Issaquah Eagles
Sea-King, 18-6

3 Heather Morris, So., 5-6
10 10 Alyssa Shoji, Jr., 5-6
11 Aubrey Jensen, Sr., 5-6
12 Kristin Maris, Fr., 5-7
15 Gillian Pennington, Jr., 5-9
20 Alice McDonald, Jr., 5-10
21 Kylei Rosselot, Jr., 5-9
23 Callie Rhoads, Fr., 5-8
24 Amy Lindsay, Sr., 5-7
30 Erin Nicol, So., 5-10
32 Alexa Smith, Fr., 5-11
40 Danielle Shockley, Sr., 5-6

Leading Scorers: Alyssa Shoji, 13.4; Aubrey Jensen, 11.3

Coach: Kathy Gibson

Tourney Cred: 4-0 vs. Bellevue, 1-2 vs. Skyline, 0-1 vs. Chief Sealth, lost to St. Elizabeth (Del.), lost to Winter Haven (Fla.)

Outlook: This isn't nearly the same team that nearly took down Sealth, but it's still dangerous.

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Kennedy Lancers
Bi-District, 18-8

10 10 Presley Neufeld, Fr., 5-4
12 Katie Kirsch, Sr., 5-6
14 Daidra Brown, So., 5-5
20 Chelsea Lockhart, So., 5-5
22 Jasmine Lambert, So., 5-5
24 Peggy Mathison, Jr., 5-4
30 Andrea Goins, So., 5-9
32 Ashley Eneliko, So., 5-11
34 Jamie Yellam, So., 5-8
40 Ashley Smith, Jr., 5-9
42 C'Era WalkingChild, Sr., 5-11
44 Demetria Riggins, Jr., 5-8

Leading Scorers: C'Era WalkingChild, 12.3; Daidra Brown, 11.1

Coach: Don Hoffman

Tourney Cred:0-1 vs. Auburn Riverside, 0-1 vs. Capital, 0-1 vs. Hudson's Bay, lost to Kentake (4A tournament team)

Outlook: The Lancers won 14 straight to take Seamount, but has been handled by three tournament teams.

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Lakes Lancers
Bi-District, 18-4

0 Tiayrra Bradley, Sr., 5-10
3 Brit-tani Terry, Fr., 5-1
5 Ariele Reeves, Fr., 5-7
15 Brandi McKinney, Jr., 5-5
21 Jenise Callahan, Sr., 5-6
22 Zoe Ostrander, So., 5-9
23 Sarah Halasz, 11 5-11
24 Allyson Fleming, So., 5-8
32 Chene Cooper, Jr., 5-0
33 Christina Caddy, Fr., 5-8
42 Brittany Tillman, Sr., 6-2
44 Brianna Morrison, Jr., 5-10

Leading Scorers: Sarah Halasz, 16.1; Chene Cooper, 14.2

Coach: David McEachern

Tourney Cred: 2-0 vs. Capital

Outlook: This is a team that can get scattered, playing against a team in Prep that likes to scatter.

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Meadowdale Mavericks
Northwest, 24-0

12 Danica Coronacion, Jr., 5-7
21 Julia Fjortoft, Fr., 5-8
22 Eryn Jones, Jr., 5-7
23 Marelle Moehrle, Sr., 5-9
24 Hanna Fjortoft, So., 5-9
30 Anna Molitor, So., 5-9
32 Gabi Beyer, Fr., 5-6
35 Brenna Hanson, Sr., 5-8
42 Alli Streit, Jr., 5-7
45 Alexis Nugent, So., 5-9
53 Cassandra Kosmides, Sr., 5-11
54 Annelie Fjortoft, Jr., 5-8

Leading Scorers: Marelle Moehrle, 18.4; Eryn Jones, 17.6

Coach: Dan Taylor

Tourney Cred: 2-0 vs. Jackson (4A tournament team), 1-0 vs. Mount Vernon, 1-0 vs. Snohomish (4A tournament team)

Outlook: The high-powered Mavs lack what the other co-favorites, Riverside and Sealth, both have - size.

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Mount Vernon Bulldogs
Northwest, 13-12

4 Cheyenne Walker, So., 5-8
5 Sabrina Squires, So., 5-9
15 Ally Kutz, So., 5-8
20 Adrianne Ridenhour, Jr., 5-9
21 Kelsey Schleppy, Jr., 5-8
22 Carly Feiro, Jr., 5-5
23 Taylor Madsen, Jr., 5-5
24 Emily Noste, So., 5-11
32 Mandi Barnett, Fr., 6-0
33 Andrea Fine, Sr., 5-7
34 Jill Barnett, Jr., 5-7
44 Nicolette Bohn, Jr., 5-11

Leading Scorers: Andrea Fine, 16.6; Ally Kutz, 6.5

Coach: Scott Stromer

Tourney Cred: 0-1 vs. Lynden Christian (1A tournament team), 0-2 vs. Anacortes (2A tournament team)

Outlook: The Dawgs scratched their way in, only to draw Sealth in the first round.

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Seattle Prep Panthers
Sea-King, 20-4

10 Monica Salazar, Jr., 5-8
11 Yasmin Fuller, Fr., 5-7
14 Kelsey Blais, So., 5-10
15 Brittany Roland, Jr., 5-4
20 Annie Hunter, Jr., 5-10
22 Jasmine Williams, Sr., 5-9
23 Daveonna Munson, Jr., 5-4
30 Lindsey Gummersall, Jr., 6-0
32 Allie Urban, Sr., 6-2
33 Brittnay Holmes, Sr., 5-6
40 Candace Chambers, Jr., 6-1
44 Chelsey Nill, Sr., 5-8

Leading Scorers: Jasmine Williams, 18.3; Chelsey Nill, 13.5

Coach: Michelle Hall

Tourney Cred: 0-2 vs. Chief Sealth, 0-1 vs. Bellevue

Outlook: The Panthers have underachieved all season, but have as much talent as anyone.

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Skyline Spartans
Sea-King, 21-3

4 Samantha Angel, Jr., 5-7
11 Lindsey Perry, So., 5-8
12 Alex Angel, Fr., 5-7
14 Mckenzie Barney, Jr., 5-6
20 Kassia Fortier, Fr., 5-10
21 Lauren Matthews, Jr., 5-5
22 Madison Maloney, Jr., 5-10
23 Marisa Bejgrowicz, Jr., 5-5
24 Britlyn Garrett, Jr., 5-6
25 Megan D-Errico, Jr., 5-11
42 Carlie Wolken, So., 6-1
44 Jordan Pelluer, Jr., 5-10

Leading Scorers: Carley Wolken, 9.1; Jordan Pelluer, 8.2

Coach: C.J. Sealey

Tourney Cred: 3-0 vs. Bellevue, 2-1 vs. Issaquah, 0-1 vs. Chief Sealth, beat Bothell (4A tournament team)

Outlook: The Spartans would have been one of the tournament favorites but lost SPU-bound Madison Maloney and her 16.3 points per game.

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West Valley Rams
Eastern, 14-12

4 Shayna Gilliam, Jr., 5-5
10 10 Leah Bealer, So., 5-6
12 Brittany Murillo, Sr., 5-6
14 Taylor Fannin, Jr., 5-8
20 Erin Olander, Sr., 5-9
22 Kristin Abhold, Sr., 5-3
24 Liz Tikriti, So., 5-8
30 Haley Curtis, Fr., 5-8
32 Katelin Sillery, So., 5-10
34 Erin Richardson, So., 6-1
40 Katie Hawkins, Sr., 6-0
44 Bethany Hunter, Jr., 5-11

Leading Scorers: Katie Hawkins, 12.3; Liz Tikriti, 11.0

Coach: Greg Oldham

Tourney Cred: 1-0 vs. East Valley

Outlook: Out most of the season, Brittany Murillo just in time to help West Valley win its last three to get to State.

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White River Hornets
Bi-District, 18-8

3 Kristine Brons, So., 5-7
5 Rachel Hansen, Fr., 5-
10 10 Janae Fueston, Jr., 5-6
12 Carly McCutchen, Fr., 5-6
14 Mackenzie McGrady, So., 5-9 1
22 Kelly Brons, Sr., 5-10
24 Kelsi Tyler, Fr., 5-10
30 Kelsy Fedak, Sr., 5-6
33 Kristina Quintanilla, So., 5-8
34 Brittany Riddell, Jr., 5-9
40 Megan McKune, Fr., 5-10
44 Savannah Palomarez, Sr., 5-9

Leading Scorers: Kelly Brons, 12.8; Savannah Palomarez, 11.5

Coach: Chris Gibson

Tourney Cred: 1-0 vs. Capital, 1-1 vs. Auburn Mountainview, 0-3 vs. Auburn Riverside

Outlook: This tournament perrenial has an opportunity for a small run.

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Click Here for Official State 3A Bracket

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Glenn Nelson is the publisher of HoopGurlz.com and the editor-in-chief of Scout Media (www.Scout.com), an online sports network and magazine-publishing company and subsidiary of Fox Interactive Media. Glenn also founded and coached the Dragons and Northwest HoopGurlz select girl-s basketball teams. He previously was a longtime, national-award-winning basketball columnist and writer for The Seattle Times. His work also has appeared in several national magazines and books. He is co-author of "Rising Stars: The Ten Best Players in the NBA" (Rosen Publishing, 2002). He can be reached at hoopgurlz@comcast.net.

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