4A girls basketball: Skyview beats Kentwood to make it to trophy game

Skyview girls will play for fourth place

By Paul Valencia, Columbian high school sports reporter

Published:

 

— The three senior starters knew Friday morning’s game could have been their last representing the Skyview Storm.

Instead of playing scared, they played with a purpose.

Jocelyn Adams scored 14 points, and Aubrey Ward-El and Stephanie McDonagh each scored 12, earning one more game together.

Skyview ruled Kentwood 57-37 in the consolation round of the Class 4A state girls basketball tournament at the Tacoma Dome and will play for fourth place at 8 a.m. Saturday. The Storm (25-3) will take home some hardware, as well — fourth or sixth place.

Just as important as any trophy for the Storm was a game on the final day of the high school basketball season.

“We just wanted to experience playing for a trophy, playing for three days,” McDonagh said. “We want to end it on a high note.”

The Storm earned a chance to be one of the few teams to get a win to complete a season.

“Ending on a win is the ultimate goal, whether you win all of them or just that last one,” Ward-El said.

Friday’s victory was not a surprise by any means, but Skyview coach Jennifer Buscher was thrilled with the effort.

“You never know what you’re going to get after a heart-breaking loss,” Buscher said of Thursday’s opening round defeat against Gonzaga Prep.

That result ended Skyview’s dream of a state title.

“We had to shift our focus from winning a state championship to bringing home a trophy to Clark County,” Buscher said. “Our goal was to play on Saturday, and we’re doing that. Couldn’t be more proud of these kids.”

Every Skyview player got on the floor in Friday’s blowout.

Adams shook off early foul trouble to lead the team in scoring, finishing 6 of 9 from the floor.

Ward-El had seven of her 12 points in the second quarter, when Skyview took the lead for good. She also had nine rebounds and seven assists.

McDonagh, scoreless in the first half, connected on four 3-pointers in the second half, including three in the decisive third quarter.

“They tell me that every game,” McDonagh said, referring to her teammates imploring her to shoot more. “I just like sharing the ball.”

Something clicked for her in the second half.

“Getting in that rhythm of the game really helps,” McDonagh said. “When everybody’s moving, passing it, it’s easier to take those shots.”

Genevieve Lo had six of her nine points in the second quarter, when Skyview erased a four-point deficit and took a seven-point lead into the half.

McDonagh’s big third quarter pushed the Skyview lead to 14. The advantage grew to as many as 21 in the fourth.

“This could have been our last game ever playing together,” Ward-El said. “It was either win or not play with each other ever again.”

SKYVIEW 57, KENTWOOD 37

KENTWOOD — Zaria Jones 2, Kate Kramer 8, Sarah Toeaina 17, Ashley Rosma 3, Kendall Goodwin 0, Jenny Johnson 5, Ashleigh Key 0, Alycea DeLong 2. Totals 14-52 (2-14) 7-9 37.

SKYVIEW — Hannahjoy Adams 4, Stephanie McDonagh 12, Jocelyn Adams 14, Aubrey Ward-El 12, Hanna Van Nortwick 0, Genevieve Lo 9, Sydney Friauf 6, Neesen Bristow 0, Carli Fultz 0, Kirsten Johnson 0, Ashlee Comastro 0, Georgia Romine-Black 0. Totals 21-46 (6-17) 9-16 57

Kentwood 13 4 13 7—37

Skyview 11 13 20 13—57