North Kitsap celebrates its semifinal victory over Renton. (Mark Krulish/Kitsap News Group)

North Kitsap celebrates its semifinal victory over Renton. (Mark Krulish/Kitsap News Group)

Regional basketball matchups set for this weekend

Three teams from Kitsap qualified for the regional round

It’s been a wild few games as districts have scrambled to get all of their games in before the regional seeding deadline.

While the brackets involving Kitsap teams all wrapped up on Saturday, some districts were playing matches as late as Monday.

The brackets were released Tuesday morning and three teams from Kitsap have qualified for the regional round of the state tournament — the North Kitsap boys and girls and the Olympic boys.

Here are the matchups for this weekend along with game times and locations.

Boys

No. 6 Clarkston (14-6) vs. No. 3 North Kitsap (21-4), Feb. 22, 6 p.m. at Puyallup

Don’t feel bad if you’ve never heard of Clarkston before. This town of 7,000 people sits at the confluence of the Snake and Clearwater rivers directly across the water from Lewiston, Idaho in the southeastern portion of Washington, much further south than Pullman. The Bantams won the Great Northern League, finishing ahead of North Kitsap’s 2018 regional opponent, Cheney.

It’s hard to handicap a matchup when there are no common opponents, but Clarkston is on a 12-game winning streak that dates back to Dec. 29. The Bantams also appear to have some length with 6 foot 10 inch forward Brandton Chatfield and 6 foot 5 inch forwards Tayler Garrett and Colton Dudley on the roster.

North Kitsap is on a pretty good run of its own. After beating Renton for the second year in a row in the district semifinals, the Vikings knocked off Franklin Pierce 61-51 to capture their third district championship in four years.

The usual suspects have been showing up on the scoresheet consistently in the postseason. Top scorers Kobe McMillian and Shaa Humphrey have been leading the way, but have received important contributions from players up and down the lineup. Bobby Siebers has been a 3-point threat all season long, Johny Olmsted has been a steady distributor at point guard, Jamo Moore and Logan Chmielewski are quickly turning into strong inside players capable of dominating the glass and Grant Baker has taken on some important minutes as well. Talented freshmen Jonas La Tour and Aiden Olmstead are also waiting in the wings to step up, as La Tour showed against Renton in the semifinals.

The Vikings are guaranteed a spot in the 2A state tournament at the Yakima SunDome, which begins (date), but a win in the regional round would give them a bye through the first round.

No. 16 Olympic (13-11) vs. No. 9 Fife (19-7), Feb. 23, noon, at Puyallup

It’s an all-Trojans regional round matchup as Olympic takes on Fife. The two teams are on a similar trajectory as lower-ranked district seeds that got hot late and subsequently made a strong run through the postseason.

Fife features three players averaging double digit points in Malachi Afework (20.2 points per game), Bryson Williams and Gannon Ginnis. Olympic also has three players that generally take on the lion’s share of the scoring in Brandon Barron, Caleb Morgan and Greg Brehmer.

Fife won a non-league game between these two teams 61-41 on Jan. 5, though Olympic has taken its game to another level as of late.

Olympic scored an impressive upset victory on Feb. 16, taking down the Olympic League champions, Port Angeles, 51-48, with a trip to regionals on the line. Barron scored 16 points in that game while Morgan added 12 and Brehmer had 11. Olympic had a four-point lead heading into the fourth quarter and hung on from there.

The winner of this loser out game will play at the SunDome at 2 p.m. on Feb. 27.

Girls

No. 15 North Kitsap (16-8) vs. No. 10 Anacortes (16-8), Feb. 23, 4 p.m. at Mount Vernon

The Vikings will hop on a ferry Saturday and head to Mount Vernon where an always tough Anacortes team awaits to play for a trip to the state tournament.

North Kitsap lost its semifinal matchup against top-seeded White River, 53-46, after forcing overtime thanks to a half-court 3-pointer by Ayanna Selembo. But the Vikings bounced back and took third in a win over Renton led by Noelani Barreith’s 22-point performance. Raelee Moore chipped in 15 in that game.

The Seahawks were downed by Archbishop Murphy in their district semifinal and they rebounded to beat Sammamish before losing to Burlington-Edison in the third place game. The Northwest Conference has prepared Anacortes well for the postseason and this should be a challenge for North Kitsap.

— Mark Krulish is a reporter for Kitsap News Group. He can be reached at mkrulish@soundpublishing.com. Follow him on Twitter @MKrulishKDN.

North Kitsap celebrates its semifinal victory over Renton. (Mark Krulish/Kitsap News Group)

North Kitsap celebrates its semifinal victory over Renton. (Mark Krulish/Kitsap News Group)

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