Below are KING’s nominees for Boys Team of The Year. We picked the top teams, but we’re leaving the voting up to you! Vote once per day for one of the seven nominees and be sure to check back on Tuesday, June 16 to see who the winner is.
Marysville-Pilchuck football. The Tomahawks overcame the tragic shootings that took place on their campus by making a deep run in the 3A state playoffs. If only temporarily, the Marysville community was able to put the incident behind it when the football team played. Running backs Austin Joyner and Killian Page each rushed for over 1,000 yards and Joyner was named Gatorade State Player of The Year. Pilchuck gave Bellevue a run in the semifinals before ultimately falling 20-10.
Garfield basketball. After dropping down to 3A this season, there was chatter that perhaps the Bulldogs couldn’t hang with the best of the Metro League. Garfield, which entered the year as the defending 4A champs, quieted any critics quickly. Sophomore Jaylen Nowell averaged nearly 24 points per game and the Bulldogs beat defending 3A champion Rainier Beach in the title game. As Garfield head coach Ed Haskins put it after the win, “Garfield is the mecca of basketball”.
Woodinville basketball. Behind junior forward Tony Miller, the Falcons upset Issaquah for the Kingco 4A title and proceeded to make their first-ever appearance in the state tournament. They knocked off Kentwood 58-57 in the quarterfinals before losing to Davis. Woodinville wound up finishing fourth in state and should be on just about everyone’s radar heading into next season.
Ballard soccer. Three seasons ago, the Ballard soccer team went 0-8-2 in Kingco 4A league play. Now playing in Metro 3A, the Beavers boast one of the best teams in the state. They went 11-2 in league play and knocked off defending champion Lakeside in the state quarterfinals. The run would end with a loss to Garfield in the semis, but the Beavers finished third in state — prior to this year, they had never even been to the tournament.
Eastside Catholic football. A new champion was crowned in 3A state football in November. Eastside Catholic topped Bellevue in the title game, snapping the Wolverines’ 67-game winning streak. The game also served as revenge as Bellevue beat EC in the 2013 title game. The Crusaders’ only loss of the season came to Bishop Alemany (Calif.).
Interlake soccer. The Saints soccer team beat Garfield to win their first-ever state championship (their first time in the title game since 1984). The real drama came in the semifinals, though — trailing 2-1 to Auburn Riverside in the 80th minute, forward Isaac Reed scored to send it to sudden-death overtime. He scored again a minute later, which put Interlake in the championship.
Mercer Island baseball. The Islanders are the 3A baseball champs but it required some late-game heroics to hoist the trophy. In the semifinals against Bainbridge, they scored eight runs in the final two innings to win 11-6. Then, it took 13 innings (and two tries) to beat Shorewood in the championship. Josh Stenberg hit a walk-off home run in the bottom of the 13th to give Mercer Island the 1-0 win and the first baseball championship in school history.