Columbia River, King’s Way Christian survive, advance

Battle Ground and Prairie boys seasons come to an end

The Columbia River Chieftains and the King’s Way Christian Knights were winners Wednesday in elimination games at state tournaments in Yakima, advancing to the quarterfinals.

In all, there are six boys and girls basketball teams still alive in the tournaments. Those two Wednesday winners — both boys teams — join the Union boys, Prairie girls, Washougal girls, and La Center boys in the elite eight of their tournaments.

The Battle Ground boys and the Prairie boys saw their seasons come to an end with losses in the round-of-12 Wednesday in the Tacoma Dome.

Here’s a look at what happened Wednesday, and time and schedule for all of Thursday’s games.

Columbia River 49, Anacortes 37: It was close, and then it wasn’t.

Columbia River went on a late third-quarter/early fourth-quarter run to pull away for the victory in a round-of-12 matchup at the Class 2A boys tournament in Yakima.

Jack Armstrong led a balanced attack with 12 points. Evan Dirksen had a double-double with 11 points and 13 rebounds, plus he added a team-high four assists. Marc Miranda added 10 points and six boards in the victory.

Jack Armstrong, shown here earlier this season, led a balanced attack for Columbia River, scoring 12 points in a 49-37 win over Anacortes in the Class 2A state boys basketball tournament. River will take on Lynden at 10:30 a.m. Thursday in the quarterfinals at the Yakima Valley SunDome.
Jack Armstrong, shown here earlier this season, led a balanced attack for Columbia River, scoring 12 points in a 49-37 win over Anacortes in the Class 2A state boys basketball tournament. River will take on Lynden at 10:30 a.m. Thursday in the quarterfinals at the Yakima Valley SunDome.

Columbia River, the No. 2 seed coming into state, lost in the regional seeding round. In a weird situation, No. 2 will be taking on No. 1 in the quarterfinals. The Chieftains face Lynden at 10:30 a.m. Thursday at the SunDome.

(The WIAA makes a change from a typical basketball bracket because of its regional seeding games. The plan is to ensure that the same two teams that met in regionals do not meet again in the quarterfinals. However, if the No. 1 or No. 2 seed loses in regionals, the top teams are then put on a collision course for the quarters.)

Nate Snook had five steals to lead an intense defensive effort for River. He also buried a 3-pointer late in the third quarter to gain some momentum for the final push to victory.

King’s Way Christian 67, Cashmere 52: The Knights never trailed, shooting with precision in the first half to take a 17-point lead at the half.

From there, they cruised in a round-of-12 game at the Class 1A boys tournament in Yakima.

Khalfani Cason made 9 of 16 shots and scored a game-high 20 points to lead the attack. Brady Metz scored 16 points and Bryson Metz added 10.

Brady Metz, shown here earlier this season, went 8 for 8 from the free throw line Wednesday and scored 16 points to help King’s Way Christian win in the Class 1A state boys basketball tournament. The Knights will take on Seattle Academy at 3:45 p.m. Thursday in the quarterfinals at the Yakima Valley SunDome.
Brady Metz, shown here earlier this season, went 8 for 8 from the free throw line Wednesday and scored 16 points to help King’s Way Christian win in the Class 1A state boys basketball tournament. The Knights will take on Seattle Academy at 3:45 p.m. Thursday in the quarterfinals at the Yakima Valley SunDome.

Kefentse Cason came off the bench to lead the team with three assists and three steals.

A 3-pointer by Brady Metz with 2 minutes left in the third quarter gave the Knights a 24-point advantage. Time to celebrate

The Knights will take on Seattle Academy at 3:45 p.m. Thursday in a quarterfinal matchup.

While Wednesday was full of round-of-12 games, four teams from the county got byes into the quarterfinals.

The Union boys  will face Curtis at the Tacoma Dome at 10:30 a.m. Thursday in a Class 4A quarterfinal. At the same time, on the other side of the large curtain at the dome, the Prairie girls will take on Edmonds-Woodway in a Class 3A quarterfinal.

Over in Yakima, the Washougal girls will play district rival W.F. West in a Class 2A quarterfinal at 9 p.m. At the same time, the La Center boys will take on Connell.

Back to Wednesday’s round-of-12 games …

KENTRIDGE 66, BATTLE GROUND 54: The Tigers fell behind early and never recovered in a Class 4A boys elimination game, finishing their season 18-10. It was the first state appearance for Battle Ground since 2013 and first trip to the dome since 2002.

Kaden Perry had 20 points and 17 rebounds and five blocked shots  to lead Battle Ground.

The Tigers were 2 of 13 from 3-point range, while Kentridge made 9 of 15 from beyond the arc.

Ingraham 40, Prairie 36: The Falcons scratched their way back into a tie late in this defensive battle, but Ingraham broke the tie with less than 40 seconds to play, then made two free throws to seal this Class 3A boys elimination game.

Prairie, which started the season 2-6, ended up with a 17-9 record that included a bi-district championship and second consecutive trip to the round-of-12.

Zeke Dixson scored 11 points to lead Prairie’s attack. Kameron Osborn had nine points.

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