The holiday break provides an opportunity for high school basketball teams to take a break from league competition and, in some cases, head for the excitement of tournament play.
That was the road taken by a handful of local teams. Here’s a look at how they fared.
The Spartans took the longest road trip, traveling to sunny Arizona for the annual Cactus Jam Phoenix Hoop Classic. The tourney was staged Dec. 27-29 in Scottsdale.
This year’s hoop festival brought together high school boys’ and girls’ teams from Arizona, Arkansas, California, Kentucky, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Washington.
Sumner’s boys were placed into the Cactus Division along with Colony (Alaska), Oregon City (Oregon), Huntington Beach (California), Prairie (from the Vancouver, Washington, area), Scottsdale Christian Academy (Arizona), Dimond (Alaska) and Conestoga (Pennsylvania).
All the Cactus Division games were staged at Scottsdale Christian.
The Spartans opened with two losses before salvaging a Saturday victory. The team opened tourney play Thursday with a 71-60 loss to the host SCA crew; Friday saw Sumner on the short end of a 68-58 scored against Conestoga; the final day saw the Spartans register a 53-44 victory over Huntington Beach.
WHITE RIVER GIRLS
The Hornet girls built a perfect 8-0 record before heading to the Cloud 9 Christmas Classic, hosted Dec. 27-28 at Lynden Christian High School
Day 1 proved disastrous, as the Hornets fell 71-37 to the host school. Lynden Christian is a Class 1A school but is the No. 1-ranked team in the state in the 1A ranks.
The second tourney outing brought a victory, with White River slipping past Ferndale 66-61.
The EHS girls traveled Dec. 27-28 and found mixed success at the Sterling Christmas Shootout, contested at Kennedy Catholic High School in Burien.
The Hornet girls opened with a 51-43 loss to the Fife Trojans and bounced back the following day with a lopsided 65-25 win over the girls from Seattle’s Summit Sierra High School.
Claire Lewis paced the EHS offense against Fife with 11 points. The next day, Enumclaw’s offense was sparked by Lauren Hanson’s 12 points.