I went out and got the perspective from a pair of players to preview this weekend's state basketball tournament. Princeton-bound Mike Washington Jr. from Oak Harbor HS gives us his quarterfinal predictions for the 3A state tournament. For the 4A tournament, we turned to Joe Knight from Roosevelt HS. Knight will be playing basketball at Pitzer College in California. Here are their predictions:
4A Quarterfinal Round Predictions (By Joe Knight)
Bothell vs Davis, My Pick: Davis
Bothell has had an incredible turnaround from last season and an impressive post season run, but David Trimble and his Davis team will be too much to handle. Zach Lavine and Perrion Callandret will put up big numbers as usual, but that will not be enough to take down Davis.
Union vs Jackson, My Pick: Union
I do not see Union having too much trouble with Jackson who, frankly, I think is a bit overrated. Union has proven this year that they are a force to be reckoned with; Chatman is a stud and I can see him and his team doing well in the tournament.
Central Valley vs Garfield, My Pick: Garfield
Led by juniors Tucker Haymond and TreVaunte Williams, Garfield should be successful over Central Valley. The Bulldogs play very hard and are a tough team to play against. Despite losing basically their whole team from last year, I would not be surprised if this team won it all.
Mount Rainier vs Bellarmine Prep, My Pick: Bellarmine Prep
Sophmore Adrian Davis and his Mount Ranier squad will be no match for a solid Bellarmine Prep team. Bellarmine Prep came out on top when these two teams met in the season and I do not see the young Rams changing the outcome this time around.
3A Quarterfinal Round Predictions (By Mike Washington)
Rainier Beach vs. Mountlake Terrace, My pick: Mountlake Terrace
I may be a little biased but I don't think people give Terrace enough credit. They're loaded with players who know their role and play it well. If they can take Beach out of their game and slow it down, I think they might be able to pull it out.
University vs. Lake Washington, My pick: Lake Washington
I haven't heard much about University since they're out of Spokane, but with Darien Nelson-Henry in the paint it will be hard for any team in the tournament to match up with him. Between him and Matt Staudacher on the perimeter, I look for Lake Washington to move on to the next round.
Seattle Prep vs. O'Dea, My pick: O'Dea
Easily the best matchup of the whole tournament. These are two teams that could have ended up in the championship with better draws. The metro rivals are 1-1 against each other this year and it will be close, but I expect Sekou Wiggs and company to win in a close one.
Kennedy vs. Kamiakin, My pick: Kamiakin
Kamiakin has had a near flawless season and I would be surprised if it stopped here. Zach En'Wezoh, a Columbia University commit, leads the Kamiakin attack. Mitch Penner is arguably the best scorer in the tournament, but without some help I don't see them being able to outplay Kamiakin.