White River girls sixth in state basketball

The White River High girls found themselves on familiar turf last week, collecting hardware at the close of the Class 2A basketball tournament.

The White River High girls found themselves on familiar turf last week, collecting hardware at the close of the Class 2A basketball tournament.

The Hornets made the trek to the Yakima Valley SunDome – as they seem to do nearly every year – for the March 1-4 hoop extravaganza. Having received a first-round bye, White River didn’t take the floor until Thursday.

After sandwiching a victory between two tourney losses, the Hornets returned to Buckley with sixth-place honors. That fits with fourth-place finishes in both 2015 and 2014 and third-place honors in 2012.

“They had themselves quite a season,” veteran coach Chris Gibson said, pointing to a final record of 25-4. Along the way, the Hornets spent time as the No. 1-ranked team in the state, according to the Ratings Percentage Index system implemented for the first time.

“All you can ask for is to be playing on the final day,” Gibson added, alluding to Saturday’s trophy round.

The tournament marked the end of White River careers for a handful of Hornets, most notably Kendall Bird. She departs the program as the program’s all-time leading scorer and, in Yakima, collected all-tournament honors for the third time.

The next time she pulls on a jersey, it will be for the University of San Diego. Bird has signed a scholarship offer to play for the Toreros.



The Lynden squad headed to Yakima with a 19-6 record – not the best in the field – but headed home with the first-place trophy. After beating White River, the Lynx knocked off No. 2 W.F. West and No. 5 Burlington-Edison to capture the tournament title.

“Their physicality really bothered us,” Gibson said, noting that Lynden had a 6-foot-4 inside presence that caused the Hornets trouble.

The going was tough for White River from the start. The Hornets trailed 12-9 after eight minutes of play, were on the short end of a 31-20 halftime score and were in a 53-30 hole by the close of the third period.

Poor shooting plagued White River throughout the contest, particularly during the decisive first half. The Hornets made just five of 21 shots during that span, improving slightly to 8-of-22 in the second half.

LeeAudrey Norris headed the Hornet offense with 12 points, connecting on five of eight shots from the field, including two of three shots from beyond the arc. Bird was kept largely in check, finishing with 10 points.

Lynden: 12-19-22-11 – 64

White River: 9-11-10-12 – 42

White River: LeeAudrey Norris 5-8 0-0 12; Kendall Bird 2-10 6-8 10; Lucy Rasmussen 2-4 0-0 6; Sofia Lavinder 0-3 4-4 4; Emma Robbins 2-3 0-1 4; Georgia Lavinder 1-8 0-0 3; Chloe Narolski 1-2 0-2 3; Lily Tranquillo 0-0 0-0 0; Megan Cash 0-3 0-0 0; Noelle Mills 0-0 0-0 0; Taylee Goethals 0-0 0-0 0; JaneAllyn Norris 0-2 0-2 0. Totals 13-43 10-17 42.



During Thursday’s crucial contest – which sent the loser home and the winner to the trophy round – Bird came up huge.

She poured in 34 points and pulled down 17 rebounds, both game highs. Included were some key buckets down the stretch.

The Hornets shot the ball better, winding up 41.4 percent from the field. From the line, the team went 8-of-10 during the second half to keep the lead.

“We had to make some (defensive) stops at the end, which we were able to do,” Gibson said, praising his club’s determination in face of possible elimination.

After a rough first half, which saw the Hornets trailing 30-24, the second half belonged to White River. Cutting the deficit to a single point by the close of the third period, it was a 20-16 advantage during the final eight minutes that allowed the Hornets to advance.

Archbishop-Murphy led 47-43 with four minutes to play but, each time they scored, Bird answered back. She hit a jumper to keep White River close at 47-46, another to make the score 49-48 and, finally, she added a hoop to put the Hornets on top 52-51.

After A-M tied the game, Bird added another hoop with 33 seconds on the clock. With seven seconds to play, Sofia Lavinder connected on a pair of free throws to polish off the scoring.

White River: 16-8-12-20 – 56

Archbishop Murphy: 20-10-7-16 – 53

White River: Kendall Bird 14-31 6-9 34; Sofia Lavinder 4-10 5-5 13; Lucy Rasmussen 2-4 0-0 4; Chloe Narolski 1-3 0-0 3; Georgia Lavinder 1-3 0-0 2; Noelle Mills 0-0 0-0 0; Emma Robbins 0-0 0-0 0; LeeAudrey Norris 0-1 0-0 0; JaneAllyn Norris 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 22-53 11-14 56.



The team from the Yakima Valley was the “quickest, most athletic” squad the Hornets faced in the tourney, Gibson said.

That spelled doom for his Hornets, Gibson added, who were running on empty due to some short turnaround times between games.

As a result, the Wolves were able to grab an early lead and the Hornets weren’t able to mount a charge. The winners jumped on top 22-13 after one quarter, held a 10-point advantage at the half and stretched the margin to 51-36 by the end of the third period.

Bird again came up big, scoring 24 points and hauling down 16 rebounds, both game highs.

Wapato: 22-15-14-16 – 67

White River: 13-14-9-12 – 48

White River: Kendall Bird 9-18 6-13 24; Lucy Rasmussen 2-2 2-2 7; Sofia Lavinder 2-10 0-0 4; Chloe Narolski 2-4 0-0 4; LeeAudrey Norris 2-6 0-0 4; Emma Robbins 1-6 0-0 2; JaneAllyn Norris 1-4 0-0 2; Georgia Lavinder 0-2 1-3 1; Taylee Goethals 0-0 0-0 0; Noelle Mills 0-1 0-0 0; Megan Cash 0-1 0-0 0; Lily Tranquillo 0-3 0-0 0. Totals 19-57 9-18 48.

More in Sports

WR standout Vandegrift signs with Huskies

White River fastpitch standout Megan Vandegrift formalized her athletic future, signing a National Letter of Intent to play for the University of Washington.

Robotics teams rock in Tacoma

Enumclaw High School’s robotics teams fared well during the first qualifying match of the fall season.

White River places fourth in Class 2A state volleyball

There is a new addition to the White River High trophy case, this one provided by the Hornet volleyball team that placed fourth during the Class 2A state championships.

Early start to Crystal ski season

The outdoor season has officially greeted those heading uphill, with snow deep enough to enjoy.

Panthers, Spartans ousted from soccer tournaments

Bonney Lake and Sumner High Schools both met the end of their soccer season last week.

WIAA honors Spartans’ Ben Wilson

Sumner High two-way football standout Ben Wilson was recently honored for his accomplishments by the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association.

Sumner advances to Elite Eight in 4A football playoffs

Sumner High’s march to gridiron glory continues this week as the Spartans host Monroe in the quarterfinal round of the Class 4A football championships.

White River girls third in state 2A soccer tournament

The White River High girls brought a third-place trophy home from the Class 2A state soccer championships.

Sumner heading into 4A football semifinals

The Sumner Spartans are one of just four teams still in the hunt for the Class 4A state football championship.

White River two wins away from state 2A soccer title

The girls of the White River soccer program put together an undefeated regular season, steamrolled a pair of district foes and shut out their first two opponents in the Class 2A state tournament.

Sumner’s Mikaela Miele swam in the 4A state meet, nabbing fourth in the 500-yard freestyle event and sixth in the 200 free. Photo by Ray Still
Local swimmers, diver compete at state meet

Sumner High placed 13th and Enumclaw tied for 23th during the two-day, Class 4A state swimming and diving championships.

White River heads to state volleyball tournament Friday

The White River Hornets take their near-perfect record to St. Martin’s University Friday for the beginning of the Class 2A state volleyball championships.