1B Boy State: Lummi Nation Crushes Cusick, Guaranteed Trophy

The state tournament is not when you want to face your biggest adversity, but the Lummi Nation boys basketball team had to endure just that on Friday morning, March 1.

After suffering a crushing defeat in Thursday’s quarterfinals and facing elimination, the top-ranked Blackhawks had to bounce back in less than 24 hours without several of their key players and yet still defeated Cusick, 54-33, in a consolation contest in the Spokane Arena.

“It took them a while (to recover from Thursday’s loss) because we had such a big goal for the season and then having that one game that we couldn’t afford to have,” said Lummi Nation coach Jerome Toby. “And yet today we were back on our game and the boys were having fun and flying around and playing our game.”

Lummi Nation now is guaranteed a trophy and will play for fourth or sixth place on Saturday at 8 a.m. against third-seeded Moses Lake Christian-Covenant Christian.

For the latest game stories and photos from all our state teams, keep checking Whatcom Hoops throughout the day.

“We were coming in (to the season) with a lot of new faces,” said Toby, whose team last trophied with a fourth place in 2022. “We thought getting a trophy was a goal they could reach with commitment and hard work. For them to come out and play the way they did today … they could have quit, but they rallied together.”

Friday’s victory seemed unlikely, especially with the emotional weight of Thursday’s loss, which ended Lummi Nation’s 22-game winning streak and its dreams of a state title. Add that to having star point guard Jerome Toby Jr. barely able to play two minutes because of an inflamed knee and key reserve Mathias Johnson sitting out the game.

The rest of the team, however, picked up the slack.

On defense, Lummi Nation limited the Panthers to single digits in every quarter and held Cusick to its lowest point total of the season. And this was a school that was seeded sixth, came into the game 20-5, and won the 2022 state title.

On offense, Landon Day saved his best for the end as the senior forward made four 3-pointers and led the Blackhawks with 14 points. On the other end of the spectrum, freshman Dyson Edwards enjoyed his first big-time experience at state by scoring 10 points and pulling down 6 rebounds.

But as usual, it was a team effort by the Blackhawks. Raymond Perkins had 8 points and fellow senior Desmond Bailey had 7 points and 5 assists. Juniors Tony Abrams and Karson Revey had 13 and 9 rebounds, respectively, as Lummi Nation outrebounded the Panthers, 46-25.

“It was really good to have everybody step up,” said coach Toby, singling out almost every player for praise. “Our seniors didn’t want to go home, but I thought they all played well. I’m really proud of them.”

EDITOR’S NOTE: A big thank you from Whatcom Hoops to Heather Leighton for taking all the photos.

Lummi Nation 54, Cusick 33

Cusick                   9         8        6       10—33

Lummi Nation    10       21       11       12—54

Cusick: Bode Seymour 15, Dennis Campbell 4, Jayden McCrea 3, Daniel Lyon, Roland Campbell 5, Jamieson Oaks, Chris Mackey 4, Thomas Sullivan 2, Maks Zyk, Jason Cullooyah, Richard Sandwick.

Lummi Nation: Jerome Toby, Landon LaFontaine 3, Tobias Francis, Dyson Edwards 10, Raymond Perkins 8, Landon Day 14, Tony Abrams 5, Trevon Lee 6, Karson Revey 4, Desmond Bailey 7, Deandre James. 


At Spokane Arena

Wednesday, Feb. 28

Cusick 64, Muckleshoot Tribal 54 (loser out)

Mossyrock 69, Summit Classical Christian 68 (loser out)

Neah Bay 58, Oakesdale 45 (loser out)

Columbia Adventist 54, Naselle 51 (loser out)

Thursday, Feb. 29

DeSales 56, Cusick 48

Mossyrock 59, Lummi Nation 43

Neah Bay 62, Moses Lake Christian-Covenant Christian 42

Wellpinit 70, Columbia Adventist 50

Friday, March 1

Lummi Nation 54, Cusick 33 (loser out)

Moses Lake Christian-Covenant Christian 62, Columbia Adventist 42 (loser out)

Mossyrock 58, DeSales 54

Wellpinit 72, Neah Bay 57

Saturday, March 2

#1 Lummi Nation (23-2) vs #3 Moses Lake Christian-Covenant Christian (22-2), 8 a.m. (winner fourth, loser sixth)

#4 DeSales (22-5) vs. #5 Neah Bay (19-6), 11:15 a.m. (winner third, loser fifth)

#7 Mossyrock (19-7) vs. #2 Wellpinit (23-2), 7 p.m. (winner first, loser second)

Jim Carberry of Whatcom Hoops

Jim Carberry is a former Bellingham Herald sports editor and author of several books on Whatcom County prep basketball. Follow him on Twitter @whatcomhoops and visit the Whatcom Hoops Facebook page.

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