2021-22 Basketball Regional Round Preview

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Breaking Down the Local Matchups in the Regional Basketball Playoffs

March is just around the corner. With the regional round of state at play across various sites across the state, read up on where local teams are headed, who they will play, players to watch and more. 

2A Boys — No. 10 Franklin Pierce vs. No. 15 W.F. West, Saturday at 6 p.m.

How they got here

The Bearcats had to weather an early postseason storm, falling to Mark Morris at home to open districts, but won back-to-back loser-out contests against Shelton and Ridgefield to qualify for their first regional berth since 2018. 

W.F. West went 14-8 this season, with just one win against a team still alive, a 54-51 thriller over No. 5 Tumwater, though the Bearcats have some quality losses against No. 6 White River by one point and 3A Kelso by 12. 

The Cardinals had a similar road to the regional round, losing to Port Angeles in the first round before dispatching Foss and Bremerton convincingly to earn a playoff bid. They went 15-5, with two losses against No. 6 White River, and two wins against teams still alive in No. 12 Enumclaw and No. 16 Sammamish. 

They split their matchups with Enumclaw this season. 

Players to watch

For the Bearcats, it almost always starts in the middle with the big man Soren Dalan. The post is a matchup nightmare for opposing squads, averaging a double-double with 14.1 points and 13.8 rebounds per game. Guard Dirk Plakinger feeds off his post game and is averaging a team-high 18.2 points per game. 

For Franklin Pierce, it starts and finishes with John John Barbee. The senior guard is averaging over 30 points per game and is the Cardinals’ all-time leading scorer with over 1,500 points. Son of head coach John Barbee, Franklin Pierce will go to the guard early and often up in Mount Tahoma. 

The stakes

Saturday night’s matchup will have a trip to state on the line, for both squads. Because both teams did not pick up top-8 seeds, when W.F. West and Franklin Pierce matchup, it will be a winner-moves-on, loser-out contest, with the winner earning a bid to Yakima to play at the state tournament’s final site. 

The winner will take on the loser of the Port Angeles vs. Lynden game on Friday. 

2A Boys — No. 4 Pullman vs. No. 5 Tumwater, Saturday at 4 p.m.

How they got here

The Thunderbirds blitzed their way through the 2A Evergreen Conference with just one loss to W.F. West, and then beat Woodland and Ridgefield to make an appearance in the District IV title game before falling to R.A. Long. 

The 19-4 Tumwater boys have only lost twice in the state of Washington to this point. 

The Greyhounds of Pullman have had a similar run of success, with just one loss to a team from the state of Washington to its name, and a 20-2 record. 

The Greyhounds easily dispatched the lone Washington school to beat them, West Valley, in the district championship, 58-39, to earn a regional bid. 

Players to watch

The T-Bird offense runs through point guard Luke Brewer, but often games have come down to whether Ryan Otton and Andrew Collins can make key shots at the end of games. The pair each earned all-league recognition, and with Otton’s size in the post, the Thunderbirds possess a matchup that not many teams in the state can counter. 

For the Greyhounds, 6-foot-8 post Grayson Hunt might be the first athlete you look at in the gym, but Jaedyn Brown has been producing off late, with the guard scoring 24 points against Shadle Park and 19 against Rogers of Spokane in the district tournament. 

The stakes

Saturday’s matchup won’t end a team’s season, but a win would vault either Tumwater or Pullman straight to the state quarterfinals in Yakima, while the loser would have to play the winner of the Grandview and Enumclaw game, also on Saturday. 

2A GirlsNo. 1 Tumwater vs. No. 8 Burlington-Edison, Saturday at 6 p.m.

How they got here

The undisputed No. 1 seed in the 2A girls state tournament, the Thunderbirds have just one slip up this season to 4A Mount Si, and have won all but one of their games by double digits. Included in those wins is one over 4A No. 1 Woodinville, but over 20 points. Tumwater won the district championship over 2A No. 3 Hudson’s Bay by 13 points. 

The Tigers loaded up their schedule with strong opponents, and own a 14-6 record, squeaking into the top-8 field for the regional round. The top seed in the District I tournament, Burlington-Edison won its semifinal over Anacortes convincingly before dropping the district title to Archbishop Murphy by 15. 

Players to watch

The T-Birds can beat you in so many different ways, and have a new leading scorer pretty much every night, but the head of the snake is guard Aubrey Amendala and post Natalie Sumrok. The pair were named 2A Evergreen Conference co-MVPs and work well off each other to score most of Tumwater’s points, but Isabella Lund and Kylie Waltermeyer are also dangerous off the dribble. 

For the Tigers, senior pairing Amey Rainaud and Sydney Reisner do a lot, they combined for 22 points in the district championship, with Reisner also hauling in eight rebounds. 

The stakes

Saturday’s contest will not be a loser-out game, the winner will head straight to the state quarterfinals in Yakima on March 3, while the loser takes on the winner of West Valley (Spokane) and North Kitsap on March 2. 

2A Girls — No. 4 W.F. West vs. No. 5 Archbishop Murphy, Friday at 8 p.m.

How they got here

The Bearcats didn’t play for a district championship, but loaded up their schedule with 2A contenders and only lost to three teams over the course of the season so far: 2A No. 1 Tumwater, 2A No. 3 Hudson’s Bay, and 4A No. 11 Olympia. They beat Hockinson in the first round of the district tournament before falling to Hudson’s Bay in the semifinals, and then dispatching R.A. Long in dominant fashion to earn yet another regional bid. 

Archbishop Murphy had an up-and-down season, going 13-6, but played well when it meant the most, defeating Burlington-Edison in the district championship by 15. 

Players to watch

The Bearcats will feed the program’s all-time leading scorer Drea Brumfield all game, and rightfully so, but fellow seniors Lexi Roberts, Olivia Remund, and Kyla McCallum have also been stalwarts in their starting lineup who could be X-factors for the Bearcats’ postseason run. 

Murphy, meanwhile, has plenty of players to account for, but Taylor Campbell scored a team-high 18 points in its district championship demolition of Burlington-Edison last weekend. 

The stakes

Since both teams secured top-8 seeds, neither is playing for its entire season this weekend at Tumwater. The winner moves straight into the state quarterfinals in Yakima on March 3 while the loser takes on the winner of Lynden and Sequim on March 2. 

1A Girls — No. 12 Tenino vs. No. 13 Toppenish, Friday at 6 p.m.

How they got here

The Beaver girls clinched their first regional bid in a decade with a District IV semifinal win over La Center last week before falling in the district championship to Montesano by three points. Tenino gets it down with its defense, and with a 16-6 record, have a few wins over teams still alive: La Center and 2B Adna. Three of its losses were to 1A No. 4 Montesano. 

The Wildcats have a similar record, going 16-7, with three losses coming to No. 5 Zillah, which also beat Tenino. Toppenish beat College Place, lost to Zillah, and then beat Royal and Connell convincingly to move into the regional round. 

Players to watch

Tenino’s Ashley Schow might be the best pure scorer in District IV, and has seen more box-and-one defenses than most in her four-year career, but Abby Severse and Megan Letts have also stepped up for the Beavers of late. 

Toppenish’s Jadyn Johnson is a strong presence in the post for the Wildcats, and came up big in a loser-out contest against Royal with 11 points and 14 rebounds. 

The stakes

Rights to play in Yakima will be on the line at W.F. West, with the loser’s season coming to an end and the winner earning the chance to play March 2 in Yakima against the loser of Zillah and Montesano. 

2B Boys — No. 4 Brewster vs. No. 5 Morton-White Pass, Saturday at Noon

How they got here

The Timberwolves, one of the hottest teams in Class 2B, have won 11 of their last 13 games, and ran all the way to the District IV championship game before falling to Kalama, 43-42. 

The 16-6 Morton-White Pass beat Ocosta, Forks, and Adna to make the championship game and finish as district and league runners-up. 

The 18-5 Bears shocked Okanogan with a 50-47 district championship last weekend, and beat Lake Roosevelt twice to close out a strong stretch of the final season. Though they have losses to 1A Zillah and Okanogan and Liberty (Spangle) from earlier this season, Brewster is on an 8-game win streak. 

Players to watch

MWP got an added boost from post Josh Salguero midseason, who is a matchup nightmare down low for 2B squads. The junior big man has unique size and shotmaking ability to give the T-Wolves a unique weapon down low, while Gary Dotson makes plays from the outside and inside at the other forward spot. 

But Brewster might have the perfect team to match Salguero, with a pair of posts in Kelson Gebbers and AJ Woodward that are 6-foot-6 and 6-foot-5, respectively. The Bears have punished teams inside all year, and this matchup might feature the best big men in the 2B tournament. 

The stakes

Earning the fourth and fifth seeds, each team is playing for a spot in the state quarterfinal in Spokane March 3. The loser will play the winner of Northwest Christian (Colbert) and Cle Elum-Roslyn in Spokane March 2. 

2B Boys — No. 3 Colfax vs. No. 6 Napavine, Friday at 6 p.m.

How they got here

The Tigers didn’t finish the way they wanted, with losses to No. 1 Kalama on a buzzer-beater in the district semifinals and No. 7 Adna in the third-place game, but with a strong resume they earned a top-8 seed and a guaranteed spot to Spokane. 

The 17-5 Napavine boys have wins over 2A Black Hills, 1A Castle Rock, and a slew of 2B state qualifiers like Mabton, Toutle Lake and Ilwaco. 

The Bulldogs of Colfax are 17-4, with losses to just 2A Pullman, Clarkston, and Liberty (Spangle) twice. The Bulldogs most recently lost in their district tournament championship to Liberty last weekend.  

Players to watch

6-foot-6, 295-pound Utah football commit Keith Olson will get a lot of attention, but Tiger sophomore James Grose might be the best pure hooper on the squad, and Jarin Prather can light up the net behind the arc for the well-rounded Tigers. 

The Lustig brothers, Seth and John, lead a balanced Bulldog attack, but the brothers are often at the forefront. In a district semifinal win over Davenport, they combined for 43 points. 

The stakes

The winner advances straight to the state quarterfinals in Spokane March 3, while the loser plays the winner of Mabton and Toutle Lake on March 2. 

2B Boys — No. 2 Liberty (Spangle) vs. No. 7 Adna, Saturday at 2 p.m.

How they got here

The Pirates fell in the district semifinals to Morton-White Pass, but responded with a strong win over No. 6 Napavine in the third-place game entering the state playoffs. Adna finished tied for second in the Central 2B League, finishing 20-5 with wins over 1A Montesano, Castle Rock, and several other higher-classified teams. 

The Lancers won their district championship over No. 3 Colfax, and have just two losses to Freeman and Colfax back in December. Liberty (Spangle) has won 14 games in a row. 

Players to watch

The Pirates have several sharpshooters to contend with, but point guard Braeden Salme and forward Lane Johnson have been revelations of late, with Salme leading Adna in scoring and Johnson scoring in double figures in each of their district games the last few weeks. 

The Lancers balanced roster make them hard to defend, but Lincoln Foland and Tayshawn Colvin are two standouts, scoring 17 and 15, respectively, to help the Lancers capture a district crown. 

The stakes

The winner advances to the state quarterfinals in Spokane March 3, while the loser takes on the winner of Ilwaco and Columbia (Burbank) on March 2 in Spokane. 

2B Girls — No. 9 Adna vs. No. 16 Granger, Friday at 8 p.m.

How they got here

The Pirates finished as one of the hottest teams in District IV, winning 12 of their last 13 games and finishing third in the district tournament after a close win over league champ Wahkiakum. Adna also has close losses to 1A’s La Center, Montesano, and Tenino, all regional teams at a higher classification. 

The Spartans narrowly lost to Columbia (Burbank) in the first round of districts before defeating River View and Tri-Cities Prep to advance to the regional round as the lowest-seeded team. The 13-6 Granger has not defeated a team that is still playing. 

Players to watch

The Pirates have a new player step up virtually every game, but Brooklyn Loose has been their most consistent player and scorer all year long. She owns Adna’s single-game 3-point record and helps buoy an offense that has picked up a lot of steam in districts. 

The Spartans Jasmine Vazquez is as good a passer as there is at the 2B level, and helps the Granger offense roll. 

The stakes

Friday’s contest is a loser-out, winner-to-final site contest, with the winner advancing to play the loser of No. 8 Chief Leschi and No. 1 La Conner on March 2 in Spokane. 

2B Girls — No. 11 Rainier vs. No. 14 Columbia (Burbank), Friday at 6 p.m.

How they got here

The Mountaineers picked up the fifth and final state bid in District IV after a dominant win over Onalaska, and had a strong enough resume to host the first round of regionals as the eleventh seed. The 15-7 Rainier girls have wins over 2A Black Hills, 1A Tenino, and 1A Eatonville to their credit. 

Columbia (Burbank) beat Granger in the first round of the District V tournament, but lost to Mabton in the semifinals and had to fight and claw to get back to regionals, defeating White Swan to make it. 

Players to watch

The Mountaineers have the most intriguing blend of senior leaders and young talent in the area, with Isabella Holmes, Faith Boesch, and Selena Niemi leading from the inside and out, and Brooklynn Swenson and Bryn Beckman contributing as freshmen. Watch out for Boesch and her lighting-quick release from the outside. 

Burbank is led by 5-foot-8 forward Alyssa Stanley, who is a good scorer and leader for another young squad out of District V. 

The stakes

Someone’s season will come to an end Friday, while the winner advances to Spokane to take on the loser of No. 3 Colfax and No. 6 Lake Roosevelt. 

1B Boys — No. 12 Crosspoint vs. No. 13 Oakville, Saturday at 2 p.m.

How they got here

Picking up their first regional berth since 2014, the Acorns will take a short drive up I-5 to take on Crosspoint after finishing as the 1B Coastal League champs, falling to Naselle in the district semifinals and defeating Mossyrock in a winner-to-state, loser-out matchup. 

The Warriors were the top seed in districts, but fell to Mount Vernon Christian in the semifinals, and then to Lummi in a consolation matchup to end their district run on a two-game losing streak. 

Players to watch

Oakville is led by volume shooter Eddie Klatush on the outside, and Courtney Price on the inside, with the pair accounting for most of the Acorns scoring, and Klatush lighting it up over the course of the season in the scorebook, with a high of 51 points. 

Crosspoint senior Thunderr Doty is a player to watch for the Warriors, notching a triple-double in a regional-clinching win over Grace Academy in the district quarterfinals. 

The stakes

One team’s season will end, the other will advance to Spokane to play the loser of No. 4 Willapa Valley and No. 5 Sunnyside Christian on March 2. 

1B Girls — No. 3 Neah Bay vs. No. 6 Mossyrock, Saturday at 4 p.m.

How they got here

The Vikings were upset after winning the 1B Columbia Valley League title in the semifinals against Naselle, but went on to dominate Taholah in the third-place game to earn a regional bid and top-8 seed. Mossy has several wins over higher-classified teams and boast one of the best trios in the state.

The Red Devils finished as district runner-ups, losing to Mount Vernon Christian in the title game after dispatching Orcas Island and Evergreen Lutheran easily in the quarters and semis. 

Players to watch

On offense, the Vikings go as guard Payton Torrey goes, with the junior racking up triple-doubles and double-digit scoring outings on a nightly basis. 

For the Devils, Allie Green is one of the top point guards in the state, and will go toe-to-toe with Torrey all night in an intriguing first round matchup. 

The stakes

The winner goes straight to the state quarterfinals in Spokane March 3, while the loser takes on the winner of No. 11 Waterville-Mansfield and No. 14 Muckleshoot Tribal on March 2.