SNOQUALMIE - Bothell is expected to be one of the top Class 4A girls basketball teams in the state this season.
The same can be said for Ellensburg in Class 3A.
But it was Ellensburg that had the upper hand last night in the opening round of the Puget Sound Sports Council Preseason Invitational tournament at Mount Si High School. The Bulldogs from the Mid-Valley League stunned the Cougars from the KingCo Conference 56-55.
Ellensburg will face Federal Way, last season's Class 3A state champion, in tomorrow's tournament-title game at 8 p.m. Federal Way beat Mount Si 65-56.
Ellensburg lost only one senior off last season's team that was ranked high in the state polls before star player Tami Standish blew out an anterior cruciate ligament in the district tournament and then didn't qualify for the state tournament. Standish averaged 20 points last season; the 6-foot-1 senior is headed for the University of Portland next season.
Standish scored 18 points last night and Maureen Canterberry added 13.
Jenny Maag led Bothell with 14 points, Jennae Krell had 11 and Ashley Wright finished with 10.
Bothell led 16-6 after the first quarter and still owned a 44-38 lead going into the final period. Ellensburg outscored the Cougars 18-11 in the final period.
The loss ruined Dennis Olson's coaching debut at Bothell. Olson, the architect of Auburn High School girls basketball powerhouses, came out of retirement to take over the Cougar program this season.
OTHER GIRLS GAMES
Federal Way 65, at Mount Si 56 - With three starters back from last season's Class 3A state-championship team, the Eagles figure to be a contender again this season. They opened the season last night with a victory over Mount Si in the Puget Sound Sports Council Preseason Invitational tournament. Jessica Iserman scored 20 points, Ruth Taylor had 13 and Leslie Sandberg 10 for the Eagles.
Nikki Hover scored 21 points, including six three-pointers, for the Wildcats. Danielle Blue added 11 points.
Lindbergh 70, at Bellevue 45 - The Eagles used a pressing defense in the first half to open up a 37-11 halftime lead and never looked back in the nonleague game. Leah Poddock scored 17 points and Kemo Savage added 15 for for Lindbergh (1-0). Jessie Brashen was the top scorer for the Wolverines with 20 points.
Lindbergh led 37-11 at halftime and 53-22 going into the final quarter.
At Ballard 58, Renton 29 - The Beavers outscored the Indians in every quarter to win their opening game of the season. Kim Bohrer scored 13 points for Ballard, and Jennifer Schmidt and Lindsay White each chipped in 10. Ballard led 25-15 at halftime.
At Jackson 66, Everett 63 - The Timberwolves came out shooting and they needed every first-half point to beat Everett in a season opener for both teams. Jackson built a 44-31 halftime lead but needed the heroics of Kelly Freimuth late in the game to pull out the victory. The Seagulls went ahead 63-61 before Freimuth scored a basket to tie it at 63. After Jackson scored again to make it 65-63, Freimuth snagged a defensive rebound with eight seconds left. She was fouled and made one of two free throws for a three-point lead.
Courtney Miller led Jackson with 16 points. Suzanne Craft and Annie Eshelman each had 15 points for the Timberwolves.
Everett guard Jeannie Thompson pumped in 32 to lead all scorers. Darci Pemberton had 12 points for the Seagulls.
At Interlake 43, Mount Rainier 38 - Interlake dismantled Mount Rainier's full-court press in the fourth quarter, outscoring the Rams 17-9 for the season-opening nonleague victory. Rosalie Shaw, a 6-2 senior center, posted a double-double with 20 points and 14 rebounds for the Saints, who trailed 22-18 at halftime and 29-26 after three quarters.
Bethel 56, at Kentlake 37 - Bethel fought off a third-quarter surge from a young Kentlake squad to win the season opener for both teams. The Falcons were down by only eight points going into the fourth quarter, but inexperience hampered their comeback efforts. Three Falcons - Jennifer Walker, Karmella Fiebke and Kelli Payne - fouled out and the defense failed to respond to Bethel's attack. Before fouling out, Fiebke had a solid game with 11 rebounds and four blocks.
Melissa Paul, Kristine Rolstead and Katherine Vazquez all scored in double digits for Bethel, with Paul getting 14.
At Franklin Pierce 68, Orting 34 - Franklin Pierce dominated Orting with pressing defense to easily win the season-opening nonleague game. Senior forwards Jody Sargent and Jennifer Davies outscored the entire Orting team in the first half and combined for half of the Cardinals' total points. Sarah Gregory had 10 points and eight rebounds for Orting.
Lake Stevens 60, at Sedro-Woolley 42 - The Vikings outscored the Cubs 15-5 in the second quarter en route to the season-opening nonleague victory.