The CHS girls’ basketball team aims for another trip to state tonight. Here’s a preview of their playoff game tonight and our thoughts……

Good Monday morning. Athlete of the Week and our weekend wrap on tap, but we have first a preview and pick for you. Cedarcrest High School’s girls’ basketball team hits the road to Mount Vernon tonight with a shot at a state berth on the line as they play Burlington-Edison in the Northwest 2A District semifinals.


Well, tonight is a big night for CHS as they look for a return trip to state, for just the second time in school history and the first since 2013. They meet a B-E team that has been among the best all season in the tough Northwest Conference and who have a 16-5 record. CHS comes in with a 17-4 mark. Both teams advanced to tonight’s game with quarterfinal wins this past Friday night, the Red Wolves over Anacortes and the Tigers over Sehome.

The first thing that fans should look for, according to CHS coach Brad Knowles and confirmed by us with a review of a MaxPreps/Hudl clip of the B-E quarterfinal win last Friday is that the Tigers’ bread and butter is their outside shooting. There were around half-a-dozen three-pointers made during the 90-second highlight package. The two players to keep an eye on with this in mind for B-E are seniors Allyson Ray and Annaleis Reyes-Guzman. So a big key for the Red Wolves will be toughening their perimeter defense, in an effort to force the Tigers to have to win the game in the paint.

If that happens, waiting for them there is CHS’ top senior threat, Madi Weir, and she’ll be ready. Weir is coming off of one of her best games of the season, 22 points and eight rebounds against Anacortes in their win last Friday. One of the big hallmarks of the previous trip to state, and assistant coach Susan Kenney can attest to this, is strong leadership pieces, of which she was one during that run to state five years ago as a Red Wolves player. Weir is filling that role very well right now, and you can look for her to have another strong game in the middle tonight.

Also keep an eye on freshman Jaylin Yowell once again. She had 10 points in the win over the Seahawks, and tonight is her big exam, the first as a high schooler. How she responds to the pressure that is a winner-to-state game could be critical.

B-E opened the season with a loss to Archbishop Murphy, and are 1-4 against non-NWC teams this season. But we expect this Tiger team to come out hungry tonight – their win last Friday was by just one point, 56-55, over a Sehome team that they had beaten in their previous game – one week ago today in fact – by 25 points. So one can be sure that coach Brett McLeod had some friendly words of advice for the girls following last Friday’s game that they needed to pick things up a bit, and how they respond to that will also be something to watch.

Knowles anticipates this game to be about whether his very tough CHS defense will be able to contain that perimeter threat and force B-E out of their comfort zone and into the paint. He does note though that the Tigers are averaging around 20 or more attempts from outside per game so that perimeter defense will have to be on its game from the opening tip.

We think that with that many attempts, we expect B-E will get their share and CHS will have to respond in kind, which means that they’ll have to pick up their offense as well. If that happens, this will be a close one.

At the end of the day, though, we are liking the Tigers tonight, but that is not it for CHS, as they’ll have another chance hopefully later this week to earn a state trip.


Rhett Workman

About Rhett Workman

Rhett Workman is the editor of the Snoqualmie Valley Sports Journal. Workman is a veteran sports journalist, having covered Snoqualmie Valley sports for nearly a decade with the Snoqualmie Valley Record newspaper before starting up the SVSJ. Workman's coverage has earned the support and respect of Valley coaches, players, parents and fans, and the SVSJ continues the standard of coverage that Workman brought to the Valley Record.
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