SEATTLE — The scene after the final buzzer at Garfield High School played out as it often does in state tournament basketball games, particularly when the stakes are win-or-go-home.
The winning team run toward each other, and a celebratory mayhem ensues; the losing team saunters off the court.
Such was the case Saturday afternoon at Garfield High School, after the Hudson’s Bay girls basketball team saw its season end despite a furious fourth quarter comeback, and back-and-forth final minute of a 48-45 loss to Roosevelt.
What’s different about the Eagles’ circumstance? They return their entire core from a team that made a run to the 3A regional round of the state tournament, the program’s deepest run since 2007.
“We’ll be back,” coach Michael Rainville said. “That’s the example we’re setting. We’ll be back.”
The Eagles took a one-point lead with 18 seconds left when senior Maria Mendez hit a long two-pointer at the top of the key after Jaydia Martin was met with a double team soon after crossing half court.
Roosevelt senior Karmelah Dean hit a pair of free throws to reclaim the lead with 10.2 seconds left. But a turnover off a baseline inbound thwarted the Eagles’ shot at a clean final look for the win.
Bay freshman Aniyah Hampton, who averaged 18 points per game in the regular season, paced the Eagles with 17 points, despite battling foul trouble that resulted in her sitting out most of the second quarter and fouling out in the final minute of the game.
Martin added 11 points and Kamelai Powell pulled down 14 boards against a much taller Roosevelt front court. Dean led Roosevelt with 16 points and Katie Thiers added 14.
Roosevelt amassed as much as a nine-point lead, in part thanks to a full-court press that frustrated Bay early, and led by six at halftime.
But the tide changed for the Eagles after the break, which was no accident, according to sophomore Anastacia Mikaele.
“Mentality shifted,” Mikaele said. “That’s huge for us. Usually at halftime, the conversation we have together, how react to each other is how we set the tone. We pretty much said this right here, it’s first quarter. We’ve got to restart.”
Hampton hit three second half 3s to help Bay reclaim the lead, which it did with 4:29 left in the game on a pair of Martin free throws.
Sophomore Anastacia Mikaele recalls watching in wonder as the Eagles’ RPI ranking rose from 56 at the beginning of the season, to 15 as the team advanced deeper into the postseason.
“That’s just crazy to see compared to last year,” Mikaele, Rainville dubs one of the team’s foremost emotional leaders, said.
And before that, too. Rainville took over a winless program and that won just two games in his first season at the helm.
After each game, particularly losses, Martin’s brain is flooded with what she did wrong, and ways she could have better helped the team. Each time, she channels those thoughts into the next game.
On Saturday, at the season’s end, she was quick to look forward to next season. Her and the rest of the Eagles’ core, which all returns next season, as Powell, Martin and Mikaele will be juniors; Hampton a sophomore.
“Now that we know what we’re going up against, we’ll be 10-times better next year,” Martin said.
Added Powell: “All I’m gotta say is they better be ready next year,.”
And next year? Well, that’s not so far away this time. Not if you play for Hudson’s Bay.
“Our offseason? We don’t have an offseason,” Mikaele said. “The season starts now.”
ROOSEVELT 48, HUDSON’S BAY 45
HUDSON’S BAY (19-7) — Gabriella Garcia 6, Mae Carse 0, Maria Mendez 0, Jaydia Martin 11, Xena Le 0, Aniyah Hampton 17, Kamelai Powell 7, Anastacia Mikaele 6. Totals 18 (6) 5-10 45.
ROOSEVELT (18-7) — Hayley Rosinbum 2, Kristi Walker 5, Karmelah Dean 16, Payton Dukes 5, Jaelyn Johnson 4, Genevieve Symons 2, Katie Thiers 14, Sammy Teal 0, Clare Eggleston 0. Totals 17 (2) 11-19 48.
Hudson’s Bay 4 11 12 18—45
Roosevelt 13 8 13 14—48