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Darrington finishes seventh at state
A strong team effort launched the Darrington basketball team to a seventh-place finish in the state tournament Feb. 27 to March 1.
Juniors Mike Parris and Cory Hoveskeland combined for a 100-point effort in Darringtons four-game tournament held at the Spokane Arena.
The Loggers opened the tournament with a 68-65 win over Northwest Christian of Lacey, pitting them for a tough game against two-time defending state champs Northwest Christian of Colbert.
Youre always thinking about that potential state championship, and I thought that if everything went right, we had the potential, said Darrington coach Jeff Bryson about his teams aspirations. We knew we had to play a great game to beat them (Colbert). We didnt play terrible, but theyre very good. We made a run at them.
After Northwest Christian outscored Darrington 22-12 in the first quarter, the Loggers played a close 16 minutes against the eventual state champs. Despite trailing by 14 at the half, Darrington cut their deficit in half in the third quarter before the Crusaders finished them off, 66-43.
However, the loss meant Darrington would meet with conference nemesis La Conner for game Bryson would later distinguish as the tournament highlight. After losing to La Conner in both conference meetings during the regular season, Darrington took a 10-5 lead out of the first quarter to control the game for the next three quarters, despite being outscored in each of those periods.
To play La Conner, our big league rival who we lost to twice in league, playing them was a great opportunity in the loser-out game, Bryson said.
La Conner closed on Darrington for a 45-45 score at the end of regulation, forcing overtime. Hoveskeland had 10 of his 15 points in the second half and overtime, contributing to Darringtons 52-50 win. La Conner had a shot to win it at the end, but missed.
The top moment was definitely watching that shot go, Bryson said. We were up two and they had .8 seconds watching that shot fall 10 feet short, I could tell right off. Winning that game was pretty satisfying.
Defeating La Conner meant the Braves were sent packing and Darrington would meet Wahkiakum March 1 in a game that would determine fourth and seventh place. Culminating their yo-yo week at state, the Loggers lost 67-49, taking seventh.
The Mules outscored Darrington in every quarter, with only Parris breaking into double figures for the Loggers.
We just didnt come ready to play, that was basically the bottom line. I give them credit, they came ready, Bryson said of his teams season finale, but added of their overall tournament experience, We quickly overlooked that game, and I think the pinnacle of that season will always be the win over La Conner at state.
True to Darringtons entire season, multiple players contributed throughout the tournament. In addition to standout performances from Hoveskeland and tournament second-teamer Parris, four of the teams seniors chipped in 20-plus points in the tournaments run. Forward Jeremy Monteith mustered 29 points over the four days, thanks in large part to a 16-point game in the opener against Northwest Christian.
Guards Justin ODell and Derrick Green also had their tournament best performance in the opener with nine and 10 points respectively, for 23 and 20 overall. Mark Jones was a steady presence throughout the tournament for 26 total points.
Theyre a good group of guys. They really wanted it, they really pulled it together, especially in that La Conner game. I think the seniors really set the tone in that game, Bryson said. We played man-to-man that whole game and everybody really did a top-notch job of sticking with their man and shutting them down.
At Spokane Arena
Darrington 16 13 23 16 68
NW Christian (Lacey) 15 16 12 22 65
Darrington ODell 9, Hoveskeland 20, Green 10, Parris 6, Jones 6, Monteith 16, Olsen 1.
NW Christian (Colbert) 22 14 13 17 66
Darrington 12 10 15 5 43
Darrington ODell 5, Hoveskeland 4, Green 3, Parris 18, Jones 8, Monteith 5.
Darrington 10 12 11 12 7 52
La Conner 5 13 14 13 5 50
Darrington ODell 2, Hoveskeland 15, Green 2, Parris 19, Jones 6, Monteith 4, Olsen 4.
Wahkiakum 13 21 16 17 67
Darrington 10 13 10 16 49
Darrington ODell 7, Hoveskeland 6, Green 5, Barquest 2, Parris 12, Schillhammer 3, Jones 6, Monteith 4, Olsen 4.