Wildcats wallop shorthanded Totems

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The Mount Si Wildcats girls' basketball team overcame a slow start offensively last Wednesday to defeat a woefully understaffed Sammamish Totems squad. Rachel Travis scored 21 points, and shot a torrid 5-for-7 from three-point range, as Mount Si won, 76-49.

The Totems only suited up six players and finished the game with only three after two fouled out and one, senior Jessica Myers, left the game early in the second half with what appeared to be a lower back injury.

Mount Si didn't take advantage of Sammamish's staffing problems.

"Well, we did the honorable thing. When they went to four players, we pulled our fifth off the floor and played them straight up. And so my girls learned about dignity tonight, and they learned about what it means to be honorable," said Mount Si coach Dirk Hansen.

Defense and depth were keys to the victory.

"We've been working on [defense] on a daily basis and it's just starting to pay off and it's great to finally be able to pull off a win by that much, and teamwork came together," said the Wildcats' junior Shannon Posey, who scored 12 points off the bench.

Another Mount Si reserve that had a solid outing was sophomore JV call-up Jessica Marley. In her first varsity action, she scored seven points.

"It was amazing. I didn't think that I'd get that much time and that many opportunities to get lay-ins or fast breaks and stuff, so it was really cool," said Marley.

Senior Lauren Stillwell led Sammamish with 20 points, while sophomore Jenny Cromwell pitched in 16 to pace the Totems. Whitney Beyerlin added 14 to assist the Mount Si efforts.

The scoreboard early on may have shown Sammamish with the lead, but Hansen was not fooled.

"They weren't beating us at all. We just couldn't get any shots to fall down," said Hansen. "Every single one of my kids came and played hard, and we, with our defense and our intensity, it has a dramatic effect on teams in the second half because the pressure just keeps coming and coming."

Mount Si outscored Sammamish 27-8 in the decisive second quarter, after finishing the first quarter trailing 12-11. The Wildcats cruised the entire second half.

The Wildcats learned last week that they will be playing Post Falls, Idaho, after all. After having the game, round one of their Idaho road trip - canceled initially back in December due to the severe windstorm, which walloped the Upper Valley - Mount Si scheduled a date with Seattle's Holy Names to replace Post Falls.

"Post Falls called and they kept calling, 'Come on, come on, we want you! We want you!', and so 'OK, all right,' so we canceled the game with Holy Names and said [to Post Falls], 'You want us, here we come,'" Hansen said.

Post Falls is the defending Idaho state girls' champion. Mount Si will play the Trojans Saturday at 3 p.m. on a neutral floor at Big Bend Community College in Moses Lake, prior to Big Bend's scheduled home game. Posey is excited.

"I think it's the best experience that we can have, because we're playing a state champion team and it's just going to be great to finally work against a team that's going to be experienced like that, and we'll develop from that," said Posey.

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