By Doug Petrowski/MLT News editor
In a rough-and-tumble match-up between Edmonds School District rivals, the Mountlake Terrace Hawks came out on top of the Meadowdale Mavericks 48-32 in a Wesco 3A South girls basketball game Thursday at Mountlake Terrace High School.
The win pushed Terrace’s league record to 8-1, 13-3 overall; Meadowdale fell to 3-6 in league play, 5-11 overall.
Despite a Maverick game plan to be physical against the smaller Terrace line-up, the Hawks were able to out-muscle and out-rebound Meadowdale in the first half 18-12, leading to a 24-16 lead on the scoreboard at halftime. Then Terrace was able to keep the Mavericks at arm’s-length in the final 16 minutes and come away with the victory.
The rough nature of the game didn’t surprise Hawk Head Coach Zach Wilde. “They’re tough; they’re physical. That’s the kind of game you’re going to be forced into playing with them,” Wilde said. “At times we handled it well, other times we didn’t handle it well. We need to be more of that aggressive, rough team — not dirty or anything, but we need to have that little grit that we go attack other teams.”
Mavericks Head Coach Marcus Merrifield was pleased with his team’s effort, but conceded that early shooting woes and foul trouble threw a wrench into his plans for the team.
“Defensively we had a pretty good game plan,” he stated. “In the first half we really executed fairly well. We just didn’t get the ball in the hoop.”
The Mavericks could only muster six points in the second quarter off one field goal and four converted free throws.
“We got into some foul trouble that really put us in some combinations that haven’t played together in long stretches, so we struggled to score,” Merrifield added.
Maverick Ndey Sonko picked up two fouls in the first four minutes of the game, sending the 6-1 center to the Meadowdale bench and opening the door for Terrace to establish an inside presence. Terrace’s Maddy Kristjanson picked up seven of her 11 points in that first quarter, most from shots in the paint, as the Hawks built an 11-6 lead. The Mavericks fought their way back to tie the score at 12 early in the second quarter, but a Samantha Romanowski three-pointer with 5:40 to go before halftime gave the Hawks a lead they would never relinquish.
Terrace showed their most balanced team scoring effort in a game yet this year as three Hawks scored in double figures. Senior Nikki Froehlich led the team with 12 points, Kristjanson contributed 11 and Romanowski added 10. Seniors Sonko and Mackenzie Bretz each had 12 points in the game for the Mavericks.
Thursday’s win capped a week that Wilde admitted was a little tougher than others, but that just made it a little more rewarding for the first-year head coach. “Everett was a tough game (a 59-49 Terrace win on Tuesday), Riley (Zucker) wasn’t there, and it’s finals week,” he said. “A lot of these kids on our team are in AP classes, sick, not getting a lot of sleep – and to come out 2-0 against Everett and beating Meadowdale for the second time this year after not beating them in years, it’s a big deal. That part I’m really happy with and proud of.”
For Meadowdale, a program that has seen lots of success over the past few years, even making the district tournament in February may be out of reach this season. But Merrifield hopes his squad will still finish the year strong. “We have four more games in the regular season, so let’s go out and play for each other,” he concluded.