Who Has The Best Chances Of Making It To State?

What a week! High school basketball fans experienced 20 Whatcom County teams in the playoffs and 46 game stories and hundreds of photos (some even in focus) on WhatcomHoops.com’s 18 posts.

So where does that leave our surviving teams? Glad you asked.

Heading into the second and final week of district, bi-district and tri-district tournaments, here’s a look at the chances of each of the remaining teams making it to state.

Class 1B Boys

LUMMI NATION

Chances of reaching state: No one is ever a shoo-in to get to state. But if there was one … it might be the Blackhawks. Lummi Nation (20-3 and No.3 in the state RPI rankings) is at the top of its game and will be heavily favored at home against No.25 Mount Vernon Christian (12-12). Win and they’re in. Then watch out, Spokane!

Next game: Tri-district quarterfinal at home vs. Mount Vernon Christian, Tuesday, 7:15 p.m.

Class 1B Girls

LUMMI NATION

Chances of reaching state: The Lady Blackhawks (14-8) are on the brink of reaching state for the first time since 2012. They will have to beat ninth-ranked Muckleshoot Tribal School (18-5) or win two straight loser-out games.

Lummi Nation is ranked No.18, but has been playing well in the playoffs and has a real shot of getting to Spokane.

Next game: Tri-district quarterfinal at Muckleshoot Tribal School in Auburn, Tuesday, 5:30 p.m.

Class 1A Boys

LYNDEN CHRISTIAN

Chances of reaching state: The sixth-ranked Lyncs (18-5) may be disappointed in not repeating as district champs, but they are in a great position to return to state. The easiest route is to beat one of three possible teams, none of which are ranked in the top 19, on Thursday at home. Even if they were upset, they still have another chance to qualify — not that they need it.

Next game: Bi-district consolation game at home vs. opponent to be determined, Thursday, 7 p.m.

MERIDIAN

Chances of reaching state: The No.15 Trojans (16-8) are playing well and looking to get back to the SunDome after missing by just one game last year. To get to state, they’ll have to beat two teams — probably county rival Nooksack Valley in a rematch of last Thursday’s district game and then Bear Creek — and Meridian will be favored in both games.

Next game: Bi-district consolation game at home vs. winner of Nooksack Valley-Overlake game, Tuesday, 7 p.m.

NOOKSACK VALLEY

Chances of reaching state: The senior-dominated Pioneers (10-12) have a most difficult path to get to state. Ranked No.35, they’ll have to win two loser-out games, the second against a Meridian squad that just beat them by 24 points on Thursday. Even if they upset Meridian, the Pioneers will still have to win one of two more consolation games. 

Next game: Bi-district consolation game at Overlake, Monday, 7 p.m.

Class 1A Girls

LYNDEN CHRISTIAN

Chances of reaching state: This one is easy. The Lyncs (22-1) will definitely make it to state since they are the first Whatcom County team to qualify. Ranked No.2 in the state, the Lyncs will be preparing for another run at a state title, something they seem to be doing every year.

Next game: Bi-district championship game vs. Seattle Academy at Shorewood High School in Shoreline, Friday, 5 p.m.

NOOKSACK VALLEY

Chances of reaching state: The No.11-ranked Pioneers (18-6) are in prime position to return to state after a one-year absence. They will have to win two games — Wednesday at home and Thursday at Overlake — but the Pioneers will be favored in both games, and they are playing well at the right time. 

Next game: Bi-district consolation game at home against winner of Bear Creek-Cedar Park Christian (Bothell) game, Wednesday, 7 p.m. 

MERIDIAN

Chances of reaching state: Saturday’s tough loss to Nooksack Valley will make the Trojans’ road to the SunDome that much harder. The 20th-ranked Trojans (12-13) will be heavily favored in their next two-loser out games against University Prep and Bush, but their reward will be another game against No.6 King’s. Meridian has lost two close ones to the Knights this season, so we’re hoping the third time is the charm.

Next game: Bi-district consolation game at home against University Prep, Monday, 7 p.m.

Class 2A Boys

LYNDEN

Chances of reaching state: The second-ranked Lions (19-2) are one victory away from accomplishing what many thought unlikely — defending their state crown. With an almost all-new cast of characters, Lynden only needs to beat a tough Mountlake Terrace squad (16-5, ranked 11th) on Tuesday to return to Yakima or do it the hard way through the consolation bracket.

Next game: District semifinal vs. Mountlake Terrace at Mount Vernon High School, Tuesday, 6 p.m.

BLAINE

Chances of reaching state: Speaking of beating the odds, the young Borderites (12-9) are still in the hunt for a state berth despite a No.29 ranking and having only two seniors. But the hunt won’t be easy; they’ll have to win three loser-out games against teams much higher ranked, starting with Tuesday’s game against No.15 Liberty.

Next game: District consolation game vs. Liberty at Mount Vernon Christian, Tuesday, 7:30 p.m.

Class 2A Girls

LYNDEN

Chances of reaching state: There are no gimmes in high school playoffs, but nobody will bet against the No.1-ranked Lions (21-1) getting to state. They’ve only stumbled once against super-tough competition this year, and seem focused on improving on last year’s fourth-place state finish. A win Monday would give the Lions that opportunity.

Next game: District semifinal vs. Archbishop Murphy at Mount Vernon High School, Monday, 7:30 p.m.

SEHOME

Chances of reaching state: The No.21 Mariners (14-8) were hit with an injury to standout post Aspen Garrison at a bad time, and now face the unenviable task of winning three straight loser-out games to make it to state for the first time since 2015. But don’t count them out, especially if Garrison returns.

Next game: District consolation game vs. Anacortes at Mount Vernon Christian, Monday, 7:30 p.m.

Class 3A Boys

SQUALICUM

Chances of reaching state: Wasn’t it just a year ago when the Storm took the district tournament by … well, by storm? Once again, No.27 Squalicum (11-11) is feeling no pressure and getting hot at the right time. And once again, the road to state will be difficult: Beating three opponents, all-seeded higher, in three loser-out games in four days.

But difficult is not impossible.

Next game: District consolation game at Meadowdale, Wednesday, 7 p.m.

Class 3A Girls

FERNDALE

Chances of reaching state: This year’s county Cinderella team could be the ninth-ranked Golden Eagles (16-5), who are one victory away from reaching state for the first time since 2014. But it won’t be a cakewalk. They’ll need to beat No.3 Arlington on Tuesday or fall into the consolation bracket and have to win two loser-out games to reach their dream. But why not? They’ve been living the dream all year.

Next game: District semifinal vs. Arlington at Mariner High School in Everett, Tuesday, 6 p.m

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