Warriors get second chance at state

"Last week's dramatic victory over Grace Academy gave the King's West School girls basketball team two chances to get to the state Class B championship tournament.Good thing, since they needed the second chance after falling 48-46 to Clallam Bay Tuesday night in a Tri-District semifinal playoff at Ingraham High School. That loss dropped the Warriors (18-4) into a loser-out contest last night against Shoreline Christian, with the winner advancing to the state tourney next week in Spokane.Junior Beth Grams had 15 points and a career-high 14 rebounds to lead the Warriors past Grace Academy, which scored just 10 points in the entire second half.In their district opener against Grace, the Warriors missed their ferry and almost didn't make the game's 4 p.m. starting time, barely missing a forfeit loss before claiming a 41-27 victory.Against Clallam Bay, the Warriors were 19 seconds away from clinching a berth in their fourth state tournament in five years. After Walker's basket put them ahead 46-45, Grams' interception of a Bruin pass with 19 seconds left seemed to move KW closer to the victory.I called a time out, to set up a stall, Oliver said, knowing that the Bruins would have to foul one of his players to stop the clock.Instead, Clallam's Emily Dukes - who led all scorers in the game with 26 points - stole Grams' inbounds pass and raced downcourt, planting and hitting a 12-foot jumper with 18 seconds on the clock.Natasha Beals' try at the go-ahead bucket missed, Dukes was fouled and made one of her two free throws for the final margin.We had the game, Oliver said. We'd been behind practically the whole way, but we wore them down with our defense and finally went ahead. We just didn't make the right pass.The swiped inbounds was the Warriors' 25th turnover of the game.Our press was real effective, Oliver said of KW's defensive effort, but we didn't have any offense. We really struggled. We hurt ourselves early with the turnovers.Walker finished with 12 points to lead King's West against Clallam Bay, with Grams and Bulette adding 10 each. Dukes was the only Bruin in double figures."

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