It was the best of times and the worst of times for Whatcom County’s two entries in the Class 3A District 1 boys basketball tournament as Squalicum won and Ferndale lost their play-in games Thursday night, Feb. 13.
The Storm’s 63-51 victory over Shorewood puts Squalicum into the double-elimination portion of the tournament. The Storm will go on the road to face the tournament’s top seed, Marysville-Pilchuck, on Saturday at 7 p.m.
For the Golden Eagles, Thursday’s 63-61 heart-breaking loss at Arlington ends their season.
Storm Use Big Second Half To Oust Shorewood
Eighth-seed Squalicum (11-10) came back from a one-point halftime deficit to knock out ninth-seed Shorewood (8-13) of the WesCo 3A.
“The first half we were just trying to sort it out,” said Squalicum coach Dave Dickson. “But we took command in the third quarter. Our young kids gave us energy, and our seniors stepped up.”
Stepping up, as usual, were senior guards Devante Powell and Dedrick Mitchell.
Powell finished with 22 points, including 11 points and three 3-pointers in the crucial third quarter, when Squalicum outscored Shorewood, 21-13. Mitchell ran the offense and scored 11 points, going 6-for-6 from the line.
Also providing a spark for the Storm were a pair of sophomores. Forward Djouvensky Schlenbaker had 11 points, seven of them in the fourth period to stem the Thunderbirds’ comeback attempt. And guard Clayton Bell led a stellar Storm defense, while adding 7 points.
“They gave us great defensive energy and key rebounds,” said Dickson, who also praised junior forward Leland Zender, who scored 8 points and played well inside.
Squalicum’s next opponent, Marysville Pilchuck (18-2), won the WesCo 3A and is the No.3 Class 3A team in the state’s RPI rankings.
Squalicum 63, Shorewood 51
Shorewood 16 12 13 10—51
Squalicum 15 12 21 15—63
Shorewood: L. Shea 2, S. Santos 17, S. Osborn 5, A. Espling 2, R. DeCastro, J. Partman 2, J. Galiardi 7, S. Finley, R. Salim 12, N. Mehari 4.
Squalicum: Brandon Cash, Leland Zender 8, Clayton Bell 7, Dedrick Mitchell 11, Devante Powell 22, Djouvensky Schlenbaker 11, Lincoln Hofer 4.
Golden Eagles Come Close, But Fall To Arlington
After not making the playoffs last year and graduating almost the entire team, Ferndale wasn’t even expected to be in the district tournament, but the 10th-seeded Golden Eagles (10-11) came close to knocking off seventh-seed Arlington (13-8) on the road.
Led by sophomore guard Jazen Guillory’s 21 points, Ferndale held a four-point lead going into the fourth period. But Arlington rallied for 20 points in the final quarter, going 11 of 13 from the line, to earn the comeback win.
“It was a highly intense and equally played game,” said Ferndale coach Jason Owens, who had no players taller than 6-foot-2 on the roster.
Guillory wasn’t the only young Golden Eagle to make an impact. Freshman guard Isaiah Carlson and sophomore guard Jesse Sapp had 11 points each, junior forward Andrew Monks had 10 points, and sophomore forward Mark Schlichting had 8 points.
“We were excited to play in a district game with a starting lineup of one junior, three sophomores and a freshman,” said Owens, noting that all of Thursday’s points came from those underclassmen.
“We will be starting to prepare for next year tomorrow, and we have high expectations for next year.”
Arlington 63, Ferndale 61
Ferndale 16 14 17 14—61
Arlington 16 13 14 20—63
Ferndale: Jazen Guillory 21, Isaiah Carlson 11, Reese Gillespie, Jesse Sapp 11, Edmond Slimane, Mark Schlichting 8, Trevor Morris, Andrew Monks 10.
CLASS 3A DISTRICT 1
Thursday, Feb. 13
Arlington 63, Ferndale 61 (loser out)
Squalicum 63, Shorewood 51 (loser out)
Saturday, Feb. 15
#6 Marysville-Getchell at #3 Shorecrest, 7 p.m.
Arlington at #2 Stanwood, 7 p.m.
#5 Meadowdale at #4 Edmonds-Woodway, 7 p.m.
Squalicum at #1 Marysville-Pilchuck, 7 p.m.
Wednesday, Feb. 19
Consolation games at higher seed (loser out), 7 p.m.
Semifinals at Jackson HS, 6 p.m.
Friday, Feb. 21
Consolation games at Jackson HS, 6 p.m. (loser out)
Saturday, Feb. 22
Consolation final at Everett CC, 4:15 p.m. (winner third, to regionals; loser out)
Championship final at Everett CC, 8 p.m. (winner first, loser second, both to regionals)
(Top three advance to state regionals)