MOUNT VERNON — Centralia’s playoff run came to an end against a tough Anacortes squad, 65-44, here Saturday in the regional round of the State 2A boys basketball playoffs.
The Tigers finished the season at 13-12, after winning three straight games in the District 4 tournament to qualify for regionals.
Ty Johnson, a 6-foot-3 guard who has signed to play baseball at Washington State University next season, led Anacortes with 21 points.
“He’s just a good player, and a good team. They’ve got quickness and I’d say court savvy,” Tiger coach Ron Brown said of the Seahawks, playing in their third-straight state tournament. “They’ve been very successful there, and they’re just a solid, mature team.”
Still, he added, Centralia had its chances, though 20 turnovers and 5 of 25 shooting from long range didn’t help.
“We had some nice shots, some good shooting and scoring opportunities, but we just didn’t shoot the ball,” Brown said. “And we missed some really nice opportunities because of bad passes and so forth.”
The Seahawks led 16-8 after a quarter and didn’t let up, finishing out the game with a 21-point fourth quarter.
Gavin Kerner led Centralia with 14 points, while Hodges Bailey and Christian Peters each added 8. Nolan Wasson scored 6 with seven rebounds.
“I was disappointed for them, and the coaches, because we thought we had been playing quite well going into it,” Brown said. “We just didn’t perform quite as well as our expectations.”
It was the final game for Tiger seniors Kerner, Angel Verduzco, Tucker Voetberg, Brannic Bailey and Max Dulin.
“We’ll miss their love of the game and their enthusiasm,” Brown said, “but we could have used a little more height from them. They didn’t take my advice to grow in the offseason.”
Brown, Centralia’s head coach since 1961, said he plans on returning next season.