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Today is the day for undecided schools to announce their decision whether to opt up or stay put allow the WIAA to breakdown enrollment classifications. The Greater Spokane League appears set with 10 teams next year - if East Valley school board votes to drop to 2A this morning. Five or six (Mead, Gonzaga Prep, Ferris, Central Valley and Lewis and Clark for sure, Rogers probably the other) will be 4A; four or five (Shadle Park, Mt. Spokane, North Central and University) in 3A. It looks like the Columbia Basin Big Nine is going seven and seven with WV-Yakima dropping to 2A. Chiawana, Walla Walla, Wenatchee, Richland, Moses Lake, Davis and Eisenhower are 4A. Eastmont, Pasco, Kamiakin, Southridge, Kennewick, Hanford and Sunnyside are 3A. Hard to believe that schools approaching 1,100 students will be considered 2A in classification size. It will be interesting to see how WIAA officials ultimately break things out.
Here’s my story in today’s paper:
Here’s your Monday thread.
Lots of good things to chat about. How about Robby Douglas at Shadle Park? He’s off to a hot start. The Gonzaga Prep boys keep rolling along. I witnessed the Mead/Coeur d’Alene girls game. Many turnovers but entertaining nonetheless. Mead will have to use its quickness to overcome it’s glaring liability - lack of size in the post. Over at Central Valley, area grapplers squared off with University and Coeur d’Alene placing second and third respectively.
Getting my first glimpse of high school basketball and the 35 second clock during the University-North Central game, I hardly knew it was there.
Although the Titans’ uptempo game sometimes treated it like there were a 10-second clock - one time in transition it only took 5 seconds to counter an NC basket - time wasn’t a factor in the 68-58 outcome. Both teams were able to run through their offenses and get a decent shot most times in around 20 seconds. And the Titans actually got into a bit of a passing game in the second half to find seams in the Indians extended zone defense and wound up winning by hitting 14 of 16 free throws in the final two minutes.
In other words, it was your ordinary everyday type of game.
Our Prep Page featured stories and glances on area wrestling including this feature on the ever-talented Jacob Trotter of Mead. Trotter is pictured above (right).
Here’s a glance at Greater Spokane League and Great Northern League teams and individuals.
Here’s a look at Inland Empire League 5A and 4A teams and individuals.
Here’s a column by Mike Vlahovich.
Fall prep sports officially ended with the conclusion of the 4A state football game late Saturday evening.
And what a game it was. Skyline is arguably the best team I’ve seen in 25 years of covering prep sports for The Spokesman-Review. I realize most of those years were spent in North Idaho, but I think you get the point.
So now we head inside for girls and boys basketball and wrestling. Not a minute too soon either!
So here’s a thread to start the week. Feel free to talk about the just-completed fall season or offer some thoughts on early basketball results.
Just one reminder: Keep the conversation civil.
The Skyline Spartans are a dazzling football team.
The Sammamish team pulled away from Ferris in the second half with a 45-21 win in the 4A state championship game Saturday evening at the Tacoma Dome.
Click below to read my unedited game story.
Coach Jim Sharkey’s worst fears were realized. Skyline’s defensive front caused problems but not as much as the offense’s ability to run the football which made it more difficult to defend the pass. Kasen Williams and his fellow sure-handed mates complimented BYU-bound Jake Heaps and the running game for a dominant 45-21 victory over Ferris for the 4A State football title.
Ferris: A 73-yard drive, including Halliday’s 49-yard pass to a streaking Bates, set up an early fourth quarter TD cutting the lead to 31-21. But the pocket collapsed on Halliday on the next possession. He was hit as he threw and picked off by lineman Jake Carlson, setting the Spartans up at the 16.
Skyline: Heaps hits Connor Brandt, 38-21, 7:51. Then, following a bit of razzle dazzle out of the Wildcat led to a reverse to Heaps, 66-yard strike to Cooper Pelluer, son of Scott, and eventually the final indignity. Heaps threw for four touchdowns and rushed for another. He and Halliday finished with 254 passing yards each. But the ultimate difference was the 192-7 rushing yardage differential. That and the fact Skyline is simply the better team.
Colfax moved the football, but four turnovers - two fumbles and two interceptions - came back to bite the Bulldogs in the 2B state championship game this afternoon at Gridiron Classic in the Tacoma Dome. They fell into a 26-10 hole, got back to within 26-24, losing 32-24 to Adna following a meaningless late score.
Here’s my unedited story:
Too many mistakes did in the No. 1-ranked Colfax Bulldogs, and the third-ranked Adna Pirates took advantage for a 32-24 victory in the State 2B football championship game Saturday afternoon at the Tacoma Dome.
Colfax (12-1), playing in its fourth final, was seeking its first state title since 2001.
Adna finishes 13-0.
Final statistics can be found on the extended entry.
Mike Vlahovich will post his unedited game story in about an hour.
West Valley and Lynden competed tooth and nail, defenses bending but not breaking in a game that wasn’t decided until the final four minutes. The Eagles, however, came out on the short end of a 16-6 decision after leading 6-0 until the final 50 seconds of the first half.
“It was anybody’s game,” said Eagles coach Craig Whitney. “We battled down to the final tick of the clock. Tip your hat to Lynden, that’s a great squad and tradition they have.”
Here is my unedited version of this morning’s State 2A championship final
Lynden defended its 2A state football championship, stopping West Valley 16-6 Saturday morning in the Gridiron Classic at the Tacoma Dome.
Click the tab below for final statistics and highlights throughout the game.
Mike Vlahovich will post his unedited game story in about 2 hours.
TACOMA - Don’t know how many of you football followers watched the 3A final between Bellevue and Liberty and kept tabs on time of possession, but the victorious Wolverines, now winners of seven of the last nine titles (including twice over West Valley’s foe Lynden) had the football for all but 1 minute 40 or 45 seconds of the first half. Don’t give up the ball it’s hard to lose. Incredibly, Liberty trailed just 16-7 at half, scoring in a minute to cut the lead to 9-7. And the score was 16-14 before Bellevue scored in the game’s final 2 minutes to ice victory. The team did it primarily with its Wing T multi-directional running game, passing only 3 or 4 times.
On another note, I discovered the Lynden quarterback Jordan Hastings has Eagle ties. His grandparents lived in the district for over 50 years and his dad, Gary, is a WV graduate. Two aunts still live in Spokane.
Lends another dimension to Saturday’s WV-Lynden 2A title game at 10 a.m. Greg or I will be blogging with updates during all three playoff games, so stay posted.
Mike Vlahovich and I arrived in Tacoma about an hour ago for Gridiron Classic. I failed to post our feature story on Ferris standouts Jordan Tonani and Gage Orosco. You can link to it here. Tonani is pictured above.
Here’s a feature on Gonzaga Prep senior post Ryan Nicholas, who is pictured above.
Here’s our predicted order of finish for the GSL along with some other notes.
Here is a feature on Mead multi-sport standout Jazmine Redmon, who is pictured above.
Here’s a glance with some notes.
Here’s a column by Greg Lee with a look at the Coeur d’Alene/Lewis and Clark matchup Friday.
Mark Hester has resigned after 15 years as football coach at Shadle Park. He was third-longest tenured coach this year in the Greater Spokane League.
I was here for 15 years and that was plenty of time,” Hester said. “It was a great opportunity here. I enjoyed working with the kids, being around my assistants and had great supported from the administration and student body.”
Here are the Greater Spokane League all-league photos and here is the link to the entire list of area all-league teams. The teams are chosen by the league coaches. We also have the North Idaho all-league teams and the all-league photos. We apologize for the delay.
The preliminary WIAA classifications are out and based upon current numbers 4 Greater Spokane League teams will be 4A - Lewis and Clark, Central Valley, Ferris and Rogers -, 6 3A and Gonzaga Prep 2A. In the CBBN, 8 teams are 4A and 7 are 3A.
However, 59 schools haven’t decided whether to opt up which could skew the final decision on Dec. 15. Among the undecided are Pasco (which like Eastmont is on the 4A/3A bubble), Southridge, Kennewick, Mead and University which can all go 3A. Kamiakin is 4A, but along with Ferris and Rogers, close enough to drop down if many of the other 3A undecideds opt up.
By my estimate, if the two eastern leagues stayed put given the current numbers, 12 would be 4A and 14 3A which would probably mean a total of 6-7 state berths combined (2.9 teams in 4A, 3.3 teams in 3A.)
If it were me, both leagues would get together and figure out which is the best way to go in order to benefit everyone.
Ferris gets a rematch with last year’s semifinal foe and defending state champion Skyline in the 4A title match next week at Gridiron Classic in the Tacoma Dome. Here is another the story of the Spartans 31-26 win over Bothell in the game between the state’s top two ranked teams.
West Valley plays defending champion Lynden for the 2A title with a chance to dethrone the Lion kings.
Colfax draws Adna for the 2B championship hoping to complete the task at hand.
Three out of four teams have made it to the State football championship games.
4A - Ferris defeated Skyview in an offensive shootout 46-41, thanks to a huge defensive play when the Storm, trailing 20-14, elected to pass rather than run out the clock at intermission. Grant Livingston picked off a screen pass and scored for a 27-14 halftime lead and Ferris was able to answer every time Skyview scored in the wild second half. They play either Skyline or Bothell, their semifinal nemeses the past two seasons, Saturday Dec. 5, 7:30 p.m.
2A - West Valley continued its unbeaten season (remember the perfect Eagles in 1976?) for their four trip to the state finals. The others were 1975 and ‘84, building a 17-0 lead and beating Ellensburg 24-17. They’ll play Lynden, a team with a proud heritage themselves, 10 a.m. Dec. 5.
2B - Unbeaten Colfax is back in the finals after blanking DeSales 19-0. Mike Morgan was right. It isn’t hard to beat a team twice. The Bulldogs play Dec. 5 at 4 p.m. against unbeaten Adna.
Will third time be a charm for Ferris? Can West Valley make its third state finals appearance? Does Colfax have a chance of dominating state titles like no other? Those are just some of the story lines in today’s Prep Notebook in The Spokesman-Review.
This is your chance to weigh in and impart partisan knowledge about your favorite teams. This blog is your forum. Let the discussion begin.
This isn’t Skyline, it’s Skyview - from Vancouver - a first time state football semifinalist and Ferris’ foe Saturday, 1 p.m. at Joe Albi Stadium. The team outscored previously unbeaten Auburn 34-21 last Friday. I’ll learn more as the week goes on, but here’s a story from the Columbian for your interest:
Four area teams are one win each away from realizing a dream - playing Dec. 4 or 5 in Gridiron Classic in the Tacoma Dome.
Ferris - as improbable as it was expected, the Saxons are in their third straight State 4A semifinal. Three weeks ago they might just as easily have not been in the playoffs. Playing to their capabilities in post season they are on the verge of making their first state football final.
West Valley - The Eagles were a playoff force with finalists in 1975 and 76 (winning a state tite) and again 1984. Then, following an unbeaten 1987 and quarterfinals appearance, the hard times began. They are in the 2A semifinals again, the school’s fifth such appearance.
Colfax - No surprise here. But the Bulldogs’ 2B semifinal foe is - DeSales. The Irish a perennial finalist until recently, have their old coach back and have been building since an early loss to Colfax, stunning first Asotin and surviving a playoff to reach state, this weekend shocking LaSalle of Yakima, generally regarded as the best team in state.
Cusick - The 1B Panthers may be better than last year when they were a semifinalist and barely lost to eventual champion LaCrosse-Washtucna. They travel against Tri Cities Prep in what is expected to be the state championship before the official state championship game in Tacoma.
Unfortunately, Mt. Spokane won’t be joining them. The Wildcats couldn’t sustain their offense in Saturday’s loss to Lakes.
The Ferris football team moved within a win of playing for the 4A state football championship with an impressive victory over Eisenhower in Yakima.
Click the tab below to read my unedited game story.
Pullman made it much harder than it had to be, but the Greyhounds claimed the State 2A volleyball championship.
Click the tab below to read my unedited story.
Bishop Blanchet defeated Mt. Spokane in the 3A state volleyball championship match.
Click the tab below to read my unedited story.
The Mt. Spokane and Pullman volleyball teams advanced to state championship matches Saturday afternoon.
I’ll be back later this evening with my stories. Go to www.wiaa.com to see live tournament brackets.
Mt. Spokane will face unbeaten Lakes Lancers here next Saturday after romping past Hanford as expected, 48-14. Lakes had 48 points through three quarters of its win in Tacoma.
Here’s the story from Richland on the Wildcats:
The Ferris Saxons got an early dose of reality on a game-opening kickoff touchdown return, but parlayed turnovers into quick touchdowns on the way to a 41-16 triumph over Kamiakin. They travel next weekend to Eisenhower of Yakima.
Mt. Spokane also won big, 48-13 at Hanford and hosts No. 1 ranked Lakes next Saturday at 1 p.m. at Joe Albi Stadium.
Here’s my story from the Ferris game:
The Mead volleyball team pulled off a storybook comeback to capture the 4A state championship Friday.
Click the tab below to read my unedited story.