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Road to Tacoma: Washington high school (WIAA) Class 3A state boys basketball preview

Loaded field highlighted by Mount Spokane, Garfield and Eastside Catholic as top three seeds; fourth-seeded Auburn faces loser-out game Wednesday

The 2022-23 WIAA basketball season is down to its final week - with 12 remaining Class 3A boys basketball programs expected soon in Tacoma starting Wednesday and running through Saturday.

Here is SBLive’s tournament preview — with players to watch, team favorites, schedules and championship game predictions:


Get acquainted with the field through SBLive's coverage from throughout the 2022-23 season.

Wednesday schedule

G1: North Thurston (18-8) vs. Mountlake Terrace (18-6), 3:45 p.m.
Winner plays O'Dea (19-8) in Thursday quarterfinals, 3:45 p.m.

G2: Bellevue (22-4) vs. Timberline (18-6), 5:30 p.m.
Winner plays Mount Spokane (23-1) in Thursday quarterfinals, 5:30 p.m.

G3: Arlington (19-5) vs. Auburn (19-6), 7:15 p.m.
Winner plays Eastside Catholic (19-8) in Thursday quarterfinals, 7:15 p.m.

G4: Shorecrest (18-6) vs. Rainier Beach (14-8), 9 p.m.
Winner plays Garfield (22-2) in Thursday quarterfinals, 9 p.m.

State semifinals Friday: 7:15 and 9 p.m.

Championship game Saturday: 5 p.m.


G/F/C Jacob Cofie, Eastside Catholic, jr. (18.7 ppg, 11.4 rpg, 3.1 blocks)

W Miles Goodman, O'Dea, jr. (9.8 ppg)

G Miles Gurske, Rainier Beach, sr.

G Brooklyn Hicks, Timberline, sr. (32 ppg, 9 rpg, 5 apg, 3 steals)

F Zaveon Jones, Mountlake Terrace, jr. (13.5 ppg, 11 rpg)

G Ryan Lafferty, Mount Spokane, jr. (13.2 ppg, 5 rpg, 5 apg, 2 steals)

G Leyton Martin, Arlington, soph. (16.5 ppg, 6.8 rpg, 6.8 apg, 3.8 steals)

P Maverick Sanders, Mount Spokane, sr. (16.8 ppg, 8.5 rpg, 2.5 steals, 1.7 blocks)

G Jaylen Petty, Auburn, soph. (22 ppg)

G Legend Smiley, Garfield, soph. (13.5 ppg)

PF/SF Jaylin Stewart, Garfield, sr. (18.9 ppg, 7.2 rpg, 3.6 apg)

G Mason Williams, O'Dea, sr. (15.8 ppg)


From the start of the season up until a couple of weeks ago, second-seeded Garfield was rolling through its competition and was considered the likely pick to win it all. Then, the Bulldogs ran into Eastside Catholic twice this postseason, dropping both games. Factor in the way the third-seeded Crusaders and top-seeded Mount Spokane are playing, the tournament now feels wide open heading into the round of 12 Wednesday.


Top-seeded Mount Spokane has only one loss this season – to Class 4A top-seeded Curtis – and showed last week it can hang with the Metro league, notching a win over eighth-seeded Rainier Beach. The Wildcats probably haven't seen their last opponent from the Metro League and could very well see one of them in the championship game should they advance. Garfield will also have a chance to redeem itself against Eastside Catholic if both win quarterfinal matchups on the bottom half of the bracket. Defending champion Auburn, after dropping its regional game to Garfield last week, faces a loser-out game Wednesday against 12th-seeded Arlington and will once again have to face the long path to the championship. Meanwhile, O'Dea is on the top half of the bracket with Mount Spokane, and if the Fighting Irish are able to advance all the way to the title game, fans could be treated to an all-Metro League final.


O'Dea, Mount Spokane, Eastside Catholic, Garfield


Garfield 68, Mount Spokane 64