Mark it down. Last night in Tacoma, at 8:57 p.m., Seattle’s prep hoops golden era ended. When Sealth’s Keon Lewis couldn’t find rim with his desperation three at the buzzer, it meant that for the second consecutive year, Seattle will not be represented in the semifinals of the state 3A boys basketball tournament — a tournament that city schools once dominated.
A Seattle school won the 3A boys tourney nine out of ten years in the 2000s. Every 3A championship game had a Seattle representative from 1997-2009. Every 3A Final Four had featured at least one Seattle team for 18 consecutive years — until last year’s shutout. And now that shutout is repeated again.
Thursday’s quarterfinals turned into a Seattle bloodbath. Kamiakin of
Spokane Kennewick crushed Seattle Prep by 23 points. An O’Dea team that had survived on discipline and cagey play couldn’t overcome a quicker, taller Lakes squad; the Irish lost 60-56. And Sealth lost a 49-48 heartbreaker to Bellevue after having led for almost the entire game.
Maybe the 2000s represented some odd genetic fluke? Maybe Seattle’s gentrification means that the city’s kids are playing more traditionally upper-middle-class sports like soccer, instead of traditionally lower-middle-class basketball? Maybe the rest of the state has caught up?
Whatever it is, you can’t count on catching a Seattle school in the final anymore. Lakes, of Tacoma, had the most talent of any team I saw Thursday.
In other news…
Give your best Nelson Muntz “ha-ha” to Oregon, who allegedly paid a fellow named “Willie Lyles” $25,000 for “recruiting services.” Lyles was involved with the recruiting of top running back prospect Lache Seastrunk. I love how The Oregonian puts it: “Lyles has a mentoring relationship with Oregon running back Lache Seastrunk.” Ha! Also in The Oregonian: “Muammar Gaddafi has a ‘mentoring relationship’ with the Libyan people.”
The Huskies beat UCLA 70-63, busting our of their shooting slump with a 46-point second-half. Of those, 24 came from a red-hot C.J. Wilcox. The win, the Dawgs’ 20th, presumably clinches an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament. Unfortunately, the Dawgs’ slim hopes of clinching the Pac-10 championship they were overwhelmingly favored to win are gone — Arizona’s win at Oregon State eliminated UW from contention for anything better than second place. (Which they can still do, if Wazzu beats UCLA and the Huskies down USC. The Dawgs can do no worse than the #3-seed.) Huskies 20-9 (11-6), 3rd place, 2 GB. Next game Saturday vs USC.
Husky RB and former Seattle Times State Player of the Year Johri Fogerson was busted on suspicion of possessing the Kind Bud and resisting arrest yesterday. Fogerson may want to focus on his hip-hop career.
Mariner ace Felix Hernandez threw a simulated game with Randy Johnson looking on Thursday. Hernandez threw 33 pitches, and afterward said: “I’m ready. I’m feeling so good.” Woo-hoo! Felix said Johnson told him: “You need four more Cy Youngs and 4,000 strikeouts just to get me.”
Hernandez is pitching mostly in minor league games this summer because the Mariners play so many of their games against division rivals. “I’ve talked to some other pitching coaches about getting ‘B’ games against teams that aren’t in our division,” says pitching coach Carl Willis. “We don’t want them getting too familiar with our guys.”
The actual team lost 6-1 to Chicago. Rotation longshot Luke French started and pitched three scoreless innings. Closer candidate Brandon League allowed 2 runs in 1 inning. Eep. Milton Bradley was 1-2 and is hitting .625.
New M’s acquisition Aaron Laffey will work out of the bullpen only, the team told him.
The Seahawks cut TE Chris Baker and QB Nate Davis. Baker, primarily a blocking tight end, had 9 catches last year, including a TD catch against the Chiefs and a 44-yarder against Arizona. Davis was never even active.
I don’t pimp out our own content that often, but you should read Art’s column on the NFL labor mess.
Your vote could put Jake Locker on the cover of EA Sports NCAA Football 12.
ESPN had a great headline in its story about the Oregon football investigation. Think about if you came across this one with no context..”Sources: Man who helps Ducks probed“. I just keep thinking of a guy getting repeatedly violated, shouting, “Hey, lay off! So I help ducks! I like to toss them some bread every now and again…what’s wrong with that? Ow. OW!”
The next seven days in Seattle sports…
Today, March 4
Baseball: Mariners vs. Cincinnati, 12:05 p.m. (710-AM)
State hoops semifinals at the Tacoma Dome, first game at 3:45 p.m., last game at 9 p.m.
Cascadia Summit soccer: Sounders vs. Portland at Starfire Sports Complex, 7:30 p.m. (SoundersFC.com video)
Saturday, March 5
Baseball: Mariners vs. Cleveland, 12:05 p.m. (710-AM)
Hoops: Seattle U at Idaho, 7 p.m. (710-AM)
Hoops: USC at Washington, 7:30 p.m. (FSN)
State 3A Girls Hoops Championship Game at Tacoma Dome, 3 p.m. (US-joined in progress)
State 4A Girls Hoops Championship Game at Tacoma Dome, 5 p.m. (FSN)
State 3A Boys Hoops Championship Game at Tacoma Dome, 7 p.m. (US)
State 4A Boys Hoops Championship Game at Tacoma Dome, 9 p.m. (FSN)
Sunday, March 6
Baseball: Mariners at San Francisco, 12:05 p.m. (710-AM)
Cascadia Summit Soccer: Sounders vs. Vancouver at Starfire Sports Complex, 3 p.m. (SoundersFC.com video)
Monday, March 7
Baseball: Mariners at Oakland, 12:05 p.m. (No radio)
Tuesday, March 8
Baseball: Mariners at San Francisco, 12:05 p.m. (No radio)
Wednesday, March 9
Baseball: Mariners at Dodgers, 12:05 p.m. (MLB Network)
Pac-10 Men’s Hoops Tourney Game 1: #8-seed (Stanford or Oregon) vs. Oregon State (9), 6 p.m. (FSN)
Soccer: Sounders vs. Colorado at Qwest, Community Shield Charity Match, 7 p.m.
Pac-10 Men’s Hoops Tourney Game 2: #7-seed (Stanford or Oregon) vs. Arizona State (10), 8 p.m. (FSN)
Thursday, March 10
Pac-10 Men’s Hoops Tourney Game 3: #4-seed (Wazzu, USC or Cal) vs. #5-seed (Wazzu, USC or Cal), 12 p.m. (FSN)
Baseball: Mariners vs. Angels, 12:05 p.m. (No radio)
Pac-10 Men’s Hoops Tourney Game 4 : Arizona (1) vs. Winner of Game 1, 2:30 p.m. (FSN)
Pac-10 Men’s Hoops Tourney Game 5: #2-seed (Washington or UCLA) vs. Winner of Game 2, 6 p.m (FSN)
Pac-10 Men’s Hoops Tourney Game 6: #3-seed (Washington or UCLA) vs. #4-seed (Wazzu, USC or Cal), 8:30 p.m. (FSN)