1B Girls State: Cold Start Ends Lummi Nation’s Season

The Lummi Nation girls basketball team came out cold in their Class 1B state tournament opener and couldn’t recover in losing to Oakesdale, 44-35, on Wednesday afternoon, Feb. 28, at the Spokane Arena.

The loss ends the Lady Blackhawks’ season at 18-9 and ends the high school careers of seniors Serena Jo Pantalia, Keyonee Morris, and Zeta Landsem.

“They fought hard the whole game,” said Lummi Nation coach Krista Mahle. “They’ve all come so far in my three years as the head coach. We had a great season.”

Pantalia and Morris were eighth-graders on the last Blackhawks team to make it to state in 2020, and along with Landsem were inspirational all year long.

“We’re going to miss them,” said Mahle. “They’re all amazing young women, and I’m so proud of all of them.”

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

The Lady Blackhawks, who came into the tournament as the 11th seed, had dreams of upsetting sixth seed Oakesdale on Wednesday, but the game turned into a nightmare — especially from the free throw line.

The Nighthawks, who placed fourth at state last year and now are 18-4, jumped out to an eight-point lead in the first quarter as the Lady Blackhawks could only muster five points. Despite playing Oakesdale even the rest of the game, the closest Lummi Nation could get after that was six points.

And the biggest reason was fouls and specifically foul shots.

The Blackhawks were called for 21 fouls and had one player foul out and three others finish with four fouls. The Nighthawks, meanwhile, were called for only eight fouls.

The discrepency showed at the foul line where Lummi Nation only got five shots and made three while Oakesdale had 21 shots, making 11.

Freshman Jemma James had two 3-pointers and along with Pantalia led Lummi Nation with 9 points each. Sophomore Ailina Rabang added 6 points. Landsem had a game-high 8 rebounds and helped spark Lummi’s second-half surge, and Pantalia had 6 rebounds.

James also was awarded with the game’s sportsmanship award for Lummi Nation. 

Oakesdale will now go on to play fourth-seeded Crosspoint in Thursday’s quarterfinals.

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

Oakesdale 44, Lummi Nation 35

Lummi Nation      5       12       8       10—44

Oakesdale           13       10       8       13—35

Lummi Nation: Jemma James 9, Brianna Metteba 4, Laraya Dennis, Ailina Rabang 6, Malinia Morris, Serena Jo Pantalia 9, Keyonee Morris 5, Zeta Landsem 2.

Oakesdale: Megan Crider, Lucy Hockett 18, Brieyn Henley 2, Payton Davis 14, Grace Perry 8, Bradyn Henley 2.


At Spokane Arena

Wednesday, Feb. 28

First round

Oakesdale 44, Lummi Nation 35 (loser out)

Wilbur-Creston-Keller 57, Mossyrock 39 (loser out)

Garfield-Palouse 41, Almira-Coulee-Hartline 32 (loser out)

Sunnyside Christian 39, Curlew 33 (loser out)

Thursday, Feb. 29

#6 Oakesdale (18-4) vs. #4 Crosspoint (23-3), 3:45 p.m.

#7 Wilbur-Creston-Keller (19-5) vs. #1 Neah Bay (19-2), 5:30 p.m.

#12 Garfield-Palouse (17-6) vs. #3 Waterville-Mansfield (18-4), 7:15 p.m.

#9 Sunnyside Christian (22-4) vs. #2 Mount Vernon Christian (23-5), 9 p.m.

Friday, March 1

Consolation game, 12:15 p.m. (loser out)

Consolation game, 2 p.m. (loser out)

Semifinal, 7:15 p.m.

Semifinal, 9 p.m.

Saturday, March 2

Consolation game, 9:30 a.m. (winner fourth, loser sixth)

Consolation final, 1 p.m. (winner third, loser fifth)

Championship final, 9 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.

You can support our student-athletes, teams, and schools
by using the businesses that support Whatcom Hoops.

Want to advertise your business? Click here for advertising options.