Whatcom Hoops: Girls Week 10 Recap (Jan. 29-Feb. 3)

The Northwest Conference and Northwest 1B League wrapped up their seasons with Nooksack Valley and Lummi Nation claiming league titles for the second year in a row.

The Pioneers and Lady Blackhawks will join the other nine Whatcom teams in heading into their respective District 1 tournament this week. The top placers in the Class 3A, 2A, and 1A tournaments will advance to the state regionals.

The top 1B teams, however, must first survive a tri-district tournament with the top District 2 and 3 finishers to move on to the state regionals. Lummi Nation has already qualified for the tri-district thanks to an overpowering 72-28 victory over Concrete in Saturday’s district quarterfinals.

For a look back at Week 10 for our Whatcom boys teams, check out Whatcom Hoops boys recap.

Besides defending 1A state champion Nooksack Valley, which remains unbeaten against Washington state competition, the hottest Whatcom team is Lynden.

The Lions won four games last week, including showdowns with rivals Burlington-Edison and Lynden Christian, and are riding a 13-game winning streak. Lynden will be the top seed in the 2A district tournament.

For a preview of the upcoming district tournaments involving all our Whatcom teams, check out Whatcom Hoops district preview on Monday.

Most Northwest Conference teams also participated in the Cancer Versus Coaches program, which brings attention and funds to the fight against the disease. Each school can honor someone important to their team or community who has battled cancer by naming them an honorary captain for a game.

Here are the honorary captains and the girls highlights from Week 10.


Blaine had one of its biggest wins of the year by holding off visiting Ferndale on Thursday, 47-43. The contest was close throughout and when Ferndale senior Mallory Butenschoen completed a three-point play with just over three minutes left, the score was tied at 43. But the Borderites held the Golden Eagles scoreless the rest of the way and got a free throw from senior Millie Berkeley, two free throws from senior Deja Dube, and, after a missed Ferndale 3-point attempt, one last free throw by freshman Teia Dube to seal the victory.


Devin Coppinger had 25 points on both Wednesday and Friday for Nooksack Valley and fellow senior Tana Hoekema had 15 points for Nooksack Valley on Wednesday and 17 more on Friday. … Sophomore Natalie Van Liew had 24 points for Mount Baker on Thursday, and freshman Violet Fox had 17 points on Monday and a triple-double on Thursday. … Sophomore Ailina Rabang had 24 points and freshman Jemma James added 16 for Lummi Nation on Saturday. … Senior Tabby DeJong had 21 points for Lynden Christian on Monday, and sophomore Ella Fritts had 19 points on Wednesday. … Sophomore Payton Mills had 21 points for Lynden on Tuesday, and freshman Finley Parcher had 20 points for Lynden on Monday, 19 points on Tuesday, 15 points on Thursday, and 19 on Saturday. … Senior Malia McCauley had 19 points for Meridian on Monday. … Sehome senior Madi Cooper had 17 points on Tuesday and another 17 on Friday. … Junior Malia Hanks had 16 points for Bellingham on Friday. … Senior Makayla Heaton had 15 points for Squalicum on Friday.


LYNDEN (RPI ranking: No.1, Class 2A) beat Burlington-Edison on Monday, 62-39; Ferndale on Tuesday, 70-20; Mount Vernon on Thursday, 73-23; and Lynden Christian on Saturday, 66-33. On Monday, the Lions took over the top seed in 2A district by holding the Tigers to a season-low 39 points and leading by as many as 27. Parcher led the way with 20 points, Mills had 13 points, and senior Haylee Koetje had 8 points as nine different Lions scored. On Tuesday, the Lynden defense held Ferndale to a season-low 20 points. Mills had 21 points and 12 rebounds, and Parcher had 19 points, 8 rebounds, 7 steals, and  4 assists. On Thursday, four Lions were in double figures as Lynden held its third straight opponent to its season-low point total. Parcher had 15 points and 5 assists, Mills had 13 points and 7 rebounds, junior Kiki York had 11 points and 5 assists, and Koetje had 10 points. On Saturday in the big rivalry game, Lynden’s defense once again held an opponent to a season low as the Lions beat LC for the first time since 2019. Parcher led the balanced Lynden offense with 19 points, Mills had 11 points and three 3s, senior Mallary Villars and Koetje had 9 points, York had 7, and sophomore Rian Stephan had 6. For the story and photos of Saturday’s game, click on Lynden-LC girls. Honorary cancer captain: Kelli Baar, cousin of Lynden freshman Finley Parcher

LUMMI NATION (No.12, 1B) defeated Tulalip Heritage on Tuesday, 59-19, and beat Concrete in the Blackhawks’ 1B district opener on Saturday, 72-28. On Tuesday in the regular-season finale, Serena Jo Pantalia (13 points), Zeta Landsem (13), and Keyonee Morris (11) were honored on senior night before leading the Blackhawks to an easy victory over their rivals. Rabang added 11 points as Lummi Nation held Tulalip to five or fewer points in each quarter. On Saturday, the second-seeded Blackhawks wasted no time blasting Concrete with a 32-point first quarter to advance to the district semifinals. Nine different Blackhawks got in the scoring column: Rabang had 24 points and a pair of 3s, James had 16 points and two 3s, sophomore Brianna Metteba had 10 points and two more 3s, Landsem added 6 points, Morris and eighth-grader Laraya Dennis had 5 points each, Pantalia had 3 points, sophomore Makaya Morris had 2 points, and junior Robyn Jones had 1 point. For the story and photos from Tuesday’s game, click on Lummi girls.

NOOKSACK VALLEY (No.1, 1A) annihilated Anacortes on Wednesday, 83-36, and beat Sehome on Friday, 72-30. On Wednesday, the Seahawks tried to get in a shootout with Nooksack Valley and only trailed, 22-15, after the first quarter. But from there it was all Pioneers as they clinched a third straight NWC title. All nine Pioneers scored as Coppinger led the onslaught with 25 points, 8 rebounds, 4 steals and 4 assists; Hoekema had 15 points and 10 rebounds; senior Lainey Kimball had 12 points, 6 steals, and 5 rebounds; sophomore Payton Bartl had 9 points on 3-for-3 shooting from the 3-point line; junior Kate Shintaffer had 8 points and 7 steals; and senior Kaylee Anderson hit a pair of 3s for 6 points. On Friday, the Pioneers’ defense shined, holding the Mariners to nine second-half points and their lowest point total of the season. Coppinger had 25 points, 7 rebounds, and 3 assists; Hoekema had 17 points, 11 rebounds, and 3 assis4ts; Kimball had 10 points, 8 rebounds, and 3 assists; Shintaffer had 7 points; and sophomore Grace DeHoog had a team-high 12 rebounds. Honorary cancer captain: Scott Connor, long-time Nooksack Valley art teacher

LYNDEN CHRISTIAN (No.7, 1A) beat Sehome on Monday, 68-34, and Squalicum on Wednesday, 62-29, and lost to Lynden on Saturday, 66-33. On Monday, Lynden Christian jumped out to a 22-6 first-quarter lead and never let the Mariners in the game. DeJong had 21 points including eight in the first quarter and 11 rebounds; junior Grace Hintz had 13 points, 6 rebounds, and 4 assists; junior Allison Shumate had 9 points; and sophomores Estela Hernandez and Fritts had 7 and 6 points, respectively. On Wednesday, LC snapped Squalicum’s five-game winning streak by holding the Storm to 14 points over the final three quarters and its second lowest point total of the season. Fritts led LC with 19 points, three 3-pointers, 5 rebounds, 3 assists, and 3 steals. Hintz had 11 points to become the 17th player in school history to join the 1,000-points club, DeJong had 10 points, and Shumate had 8 points. On Saturday, the Lyncs were stymied by Lynden’s defense and only managed 13 second-half points. Shumate had 10 points, all in the second quarter, and Fritts had 9 points, but no other Lync had more than five points. For the story and photos of Saturday’s game, click on LC-Lynden girls. Honorary cancer captain: Shelly DeJong, mother of senior Tabby DeJong

BLAINE (No.28, 1A) lost to Sehome on Tuesday, 58-26, but came back to beat Ferndale on Thursday, 47-43. On Tuesday, the Borderites never got their offense going against the Mariners. Senior Jordyn Vezzetti and freshmen Teia Dube and Marcella Bring managed 6 points each with Bring making a pair of 3-pointers and Dube scoring all of Blaine’s points in the second half. In Thursday’s thriller at home and the scored tied at 43, Blaine held Ferndale scoreless in the last three minutes and sank four clutch free throws for the win. Vezzetti and Teia Dube lead a balanced attack with 13 and 10 points, respectively, with Dube adding 12 rebounds. Senior Alia Ball added 9 points on three 3-pointers, Deja Dube had 7 points, and Bring had 6 points on a pair of 3s. Honorary cancer captain: Cullie Schewe, freshman Kaitlyn Ritter Von Trautmann’s grandmother

SQUALICUM (No.13, 2A) lost to Lynden Christian on Wednesday, 62-29, but bounced back to beat Meridian on Friday, 47-43. On Wednesday, the Storm only trailed 14-10 after the first quarter but could only hit five field goals the rest of the game. Senior Mari Binning had 9 points, 5 steals, and 4 rebounds, and senior Caitlyn Richardson had 6 points, but no other Storm player had more than five points. On Friday, the Storm jumped out to a 10-point first-quarter lead but then had to hang on to hold off the Trojans. Heaton had seven of her 15 points and one of her two 3-pointers in the first period as Squalicum held Meridian to five points. Heaton also had 5 rebounds and 3 steals; Binning added 12 points, 7 rebounds, 5 steals, and 4 assists; and junior Loretta Murphy-Kangas had 8 points. Honorary cancer captain: Reiko Horst, mother of freshman JV player Peyton Horst

FERNDALE (No.36, 3A) lost to Lynden on Tuesday, 70-20, and Blaine on Thursday, 47-43, but came back to beat Anacortes on Saturday, 46-40. On Tuesday, the Golden Eagles’ offense never got off the ground with senior Naomi Stanley being the leading scorer with 6 points. On Thursday, Ferndale had a cold shooting night as the Golden Eagles only managed to score in double figures in the second quarter. Sophomore Jillea Fox had 11 points and 7 rebounds, senior Mallory Butenschoen had 10 points, and sophomore Kayla Washington added 8 points. On Saturday, the Golden Eagles came out flying and took a 19-5 lead after the first quarter and then rode out the victory in their regular-season finale. Stanley had 11 points including a pair of 3-pointers in the big first quarter to go along with 5 rebounds and 4 steals, Butenschoen and Washington had 9 points each with Butenschoen adding 8 rebounds, sophomore Abbey White had 7 points, and Fox had 6 points. Honorary cancer captains: Michele Barmore, Robin Barker, and the late Chelsey Ebert (passed away in 2007), Makayla Nicolaas (2012),Jill Fox (2015), Macklen Peterson (2017), George “Mick” Butenschoen (2019), and Marvin Polinder (2020)

SEHOME (No.17, 2A) lost to Lynden Christian on Monday, 68-34; beat Blaine on Tuesday, 58-26; and lost to Nooksack Valley on Friday, 72-30. On Monday, the Mariners struggled against the LC defense and were held to single digits in three of the four quarters. Cooper had 14 points and a pair of 3-pointers, and senior Natalie Brewer had 8 points, but no other Mariner managed more than four points. Brewer and senior Emmy Hart had 3 assists each, and sophomore Aspen Barge had a team-high 4 rebounds. On Tuesday, the Mariners reversed the script as their defense wore down Blaine, limiting the Borderites to six points in the second half. Cooper had 17 points, 7 rebounds, and 3 steals; Hart had 12 points on four 3-pointers and 5 assists; Brewer had 11 points, 10 rebounds, 3 assists, and 3 steals; and senior Kylie Watson had 6 points and 4 steals as eight different Mariners got in the scoring column. On Friday, the Mariners had another rough games against a great defense, scoring only 17 points in the final three quarters against Nooksack. Cooper had 17 points and Sehome’s only points in the fourth quarter by making 5 of 6 free throws. She and Hart had a pair of 3s and Hart finished with 8 points and 3 assists. Hazel Eaton added 6 points, 6 rebounds, and 3 steals. Honorary cancer captain: Callie Hart, wife of assistant coach Andy Hart and mother of senior Emmy Hart

BELLINGHAM (No.52, 2A) lost to Burlington-Edison on Tuesday, 59-22, and to Mount Vernon in overtime on Friday, 52-47. On Tuesday, sophomores Lily Jude, Mary Lockhart, and Avery Manning had 5 points each and Hanks had 3 assists and 3 steals, but it was not enough to keep up with the Tigers. On Friday, the Bayhawks led by eight, fell behind and then tied it in regulation on sophomore Alexyce Evans’s 3-pointer with 20 seconds left, but were outscored, 9-4, in overtime. Hanks had 16 points, 6 rebounds, 6 steals, and 5 assists; Lockhart had 14 points and 6 rebounds; and Jude had 8 points. Honorary cancer captain: Cari Manning, mother of assistant coach Jason Manning and grandmother of sophomore Avery Manning

MERIDIAN (No.42, 1A) lost to Lakewood on Monday, 51-44, and to Squalicum on Friday, 47-43. On Monday, Meridian fell behind by seven after one quarter and couldn’t make up the difference. McCauley had 19 points and 10 rebounds; junior Brooklyn Fuller had 11 points, 6 rebounds, and 4 assists; and freshman Eden Bernardy had 8 points. On Friday, Meridian mounted a great comeback after falling behind by double digits but couldn’t catch the Storm. Bernardy and sophomore guard Kinsley Neal had 11 points with Neal hitting a trio of 3-pointers, and McCauley had 9 points and a pair of 3-pointers.

MOUNT BAKER (No.49, 1A) lost to Oak Harbor on Monday, 66-45, and to Lakewood on Thursday, 71-55. On Monday, a slow start led to a 15-point first-quarter deficit that the Mounties could never make up. Fox had 17 points, 14 rebounds, and 7 assists; junior Faith Wilson had 13 points; and Van Liew had 11 points and 5 rebounds. On Thursday, Van Liew had 24 points; Wilson had 13 points, 6 rebounds, 5 steals, and 4 assists; and Fox had the county’s first triple-double of the season with 10 points, 12 rebounds, and 10 assists. Honorary cancer captain: Judy Dunne, grandmother of senior Jenna Wineinger

NOTE: A big thank you to the coaches and Tyler Anderson of WhatcomPreps.com for providing statistics.

NORTHWEST CONFERENCE  (final regular-season standings)

  League  Overall
Nooksack Valley150211
Lynden Christian 123156
Oak Harbor96128
Mount Vernon411712
Mount Baker015317

NORTHWEST 1B LEAGUE (final regular-season standings) 

  League  Overall
Lummi Nation100135
Tulalip Heritage102118
Lopez Island7494
Grace Academy7577
Cedar Park Christian (Lynnwood)5788
Providence Classical Christian210210
Shoreline Christian011113
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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