Hardwood talk aplenty – Wins for Wildcat boys and both Red Wolves boys and girls, a tough loss for Mount Si ladies, college news and more……

Good Saturday morning. A lot of hardwood news to get to, and we start with the high school boys for you.

Cedarcrest High School’s boys’ basketball team held off a late flurry from visiting Marysville-Getchell to grab their first Wesco 2A/3A win of the season last night at home in Duvall.

Chris Busch scored 23 points and Nicolo Cammarano added 19 to lift the Red Wolves to the 60-56 win over the Chargers. “It was nice to get back home and feel the energy of “The Den” tonight,” Cedarcrest coach Joe Ayers told the SVSJ by email. “It was a great environment with the band, strong student body, and community coming out to enjoy some Friday night hoops. The game didn’t disappoint.

Cedarcrest outrebouned M-G 35-21 and that proved to be a factor in the end as the Red Wolves almost saw a 15-point lead evaporate in the final quarter, but found a way to close things out in the end. “The guys really showed some composure down the stretch to finish the game,” Ayers told us, adding, “These are the games we were expecting to get playing in the Wesco this year. This was a great team win all the way around.”

A good character-building win and one that will help in the Northwest RPI rankings, that’s for sure, with Getchell being a 3A school and there being a bonus component for the 2A schools when they get league wins over 3A teams.

CHS is at Snohomish next Friday, for a 7:00 p.m. tip.

Patterson’s lead the Wildcat boys: Junior Tyler Patterson scored 21 points and his freshman brother Quin added nine off the bench on a trio of three-pointers as Mount Si’s boys handled Newport 66-44 at Newport High School in Bellevue. Jabe Mullins popped in 18 points including a pair on a dunk, the video of which has been tweeted out by Mount Si’s Twitter feed and retweeted by us on ours if you want to go see it. Brett Williams added 11 for the Wildcats, who host Issaquah on Tuesday for a 7:15 p.m. tip.

Girls: Red Wolves deliver up north
Cedarcrest’s girls rallied from a halftime deficit and took care of M-G’s ladies up in Marysville, 45-35. Down 22-16 at half, the Red Wolves outscored the Chargers 29-13 in the second half with strong defense to pull things out for their first Wesco league win.

“Tonight’s win was all because of our defense and intensity in the second half….we finished the game with energy and made very few mistakes,” said coach Brad Knowles by email to the SVSJ. “At half-time we focused on ball movement, taking the ball to the basket and stepping up our hustle on defense and that was the story. Tonight was a team win, everyone contributed.”

And everyone did, too. Grace McKenzie led the way with nine points while Sidra Griffin and Helena Van Ess each had eight.

Cedarcrest is now off until after the holidays and will be competing in a tournament which CHS’ boys will also be competing in, over in Chelan.

Double-double from Heide not enough as Wildcat ladies fall: Sela Heide had 15 points and 14 rebounds to lead Mount Si, but the offense struggled down the stretch as Newport rallied from a halftime deficit to hand the Wildcats a not-so-good 45-36 loss at Newport High School in Bellevue last night. The loss drops Mount Si to 0-2 in the Crest Division in advance of a big game tonight at home with Crest title favorite Issaquah, now perhaps a must-win for the Wildcats to feel good about their situation going into the holiday break.

Aside from Heide, the remainder of the offense had an off-night. Nitika Kumar, off 20 points Tuesday against Eastlake, was held to just seven last night against the Knights, and Joelle Buck, fresh off a 16-point performance in that game against the Wolves, was limited to just three. The team as a whole shot just 30% from the floor against a tough Newport defense and went just 3-16 from beyond three-point line, and that probably ended up being the difference in this one for scarlet and gray.

The game tonight is at 7:00 and if you can’t make it, you can see it on YouTube, with our link to it being at the right in our news links.

College: Skagit falls in women’s action
Skagit Valley’s ladies suffered a 57-43 home NWAC loss last night in Mount Vernon to the visitors from the Community Colleges of Spokane. Sophomore Mieke Van Ess, a 2017 Cedarcrest HS grad from Duvall and older sister of current Red Wolve Helena, had seven points and five rebounds in 32 minutes of work for the Cardinals. She got the start in the post position for Skagit in the contest. The Cardinals welcome in Mount Hood tonight.

Could history come today for Valleyite?: The “Thousand Watch” is on for University of Puget Sound senior women’s hoopster Elizabeth Prewitt, and she gets another crack to clear that historic career milestone today.

Prewitt, from Snoqualmie and a 2015 Mount Si HS grad, is just 20 points from achieving 1,000 career points with the NCAA Division III Loggers, and they host Nichols College from outside Boston this afternoon on neutral soil down at Olson Auditorium on the Pacific Lutheran University campus in Tacoma as part of a weekend tournament being hosted by the Lutes. The 2:00 p.m. tip should be live on NWC’s Digital webstream service, a link to which is at right in our news links. Were she not able to clear it today, it’s certain she’ll hit it tomorrow when the Loggers wrap up the weekend activities with a game against CalTech, also a 2:00 p.m. tip. A big weekend for sure, and Mount Si girls’ basketball fans should make plans to get down there this weekend to see the two games.

WIAA releases state playoff RPI rankings
The Washington Interscholastic Activities Association late yesterday released their first set of Ratings Percentage Index rankings for state high school basketball teams. These rankings will be used to determine seedings for the state playoffs should teams make it there this season.

In the 2A, Cedarcrest’s boys opened in the 20th position, while the Red Wolve girls were ranked 40th. Meanwhile, in the 4A, Mount Si’s boys opened as well in the 20th position, and the Wildcat girls opened in the 24th position.

Reaction was a bit mixed from the head coaches of Valley high school teams. Knowles is not concerned about his team’s low ranking. “This early in the season, the statewide RPI is fairly inaccurate, so we don’t pay much attention until later in the season. We’re more concerned with the district RPI for Northwest 2A,” he told us, and this actually is important for Cedarcrest fans to know. The state rankings released yesterday are not the same as the district RPI rankings. The Northwest 2A RPI is calculated differently and those rankings will be released later. That ranking will determine seeding for the district playoffs, and that is way more important for CHS than this state ranking is.

As for Knowles’ boys counterpart at Cedarcrest, Ayers, he seems more philosophical. “The RPI is an interesting ranking system,” he told us. “It was nice to see the change of the breakdown going to the 40/40/20 TWP/OWP/OOWP (team/opponent/opponent’s opponent winning percentage) giving more value to your own winning percentage this year. There also are some advantages for us being a 2A school with the new league alignment and the new system giving more credit for beating a 3A opponent. Now, you only get points for wins……….so bottom line you have to go out and win games. But, obviously this early in the season you really can’t focus to much on the rankings. There is so much basketball left to play and there are going to be weekly changes.”

From Mount Si’s perspective, boys’ coach Jason Griffith was a bit surprised with where his team ended up to start, but has concerns about that breakdown we just mentioned. “Well, I guessed we would be 26th, so that is six spots higher,” he told us. “The formula hasn’t gotten better with 40, 40, 20, but it still favors leagues that have a bunch of non-league games. We need to focus on what our team can control and everything will take care of itself.” Kingco 4A’s schedule breakdown of 13 league games (eight within the division and five against the other division) and seven non-league games should be enough in terms of strength of schedule considerations to make Mount Si’s ranking a fair one. Wildcat girls’ coach Jason Marr did not respond to our email by press time seeking comment, but last night’s loss for his team will certainly not help their situation any.

These rankings will be updated regularly as results are reported to the WIAA and their website provider handling this, MaxPreps. So we’ll keep you updated as well.

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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