YAKIMA — Karley Eaton missed her first nine 3-point attempts for Mark Morris against W.F. West on Saturday.
Her 10th attempt early in overtime, after a missed switch on a screen by the Bearcats, was a dagger into the heart of W.F. West.
That kick-started top-ranked Mark Morris in overtime as the Monarchs beat the Bearcats, 56-44, in the title game of the Class 2A state girls tournament.
The Monarchs held the Bearcats scoreless in overtime to win their first state championship.
The Bearcats were a different team in the overtime, committing four turnovers.
“That killed us,” W.F. West coach Henri Weeks said. “We had a breakdown at a critical time.”
In a battle of District IV rivals, Mark Morris (25-2) swept three games this season against W.F. West (22-5), champions of the 2A Evergreen Conference. The Monarchs won the nonleague
matchup, 61-45, and the District IV title game, 49-43.
But for a while, a win looked to be in the Bearcats’ grasp in the biggest game of the season. W.F. West built a 22-12 lead in the first half, only to go cold the final 6 minutes, 6 seconds of the second quarter and watch the Monarchs use a 7-0 run to cut the deficit to 22-19 at halftime.
W.F. West held a 44-42 lead with 42 seconds to go in regulation on a basket by Olivia Erskine, who was named to the all-tournament second team and finished with 13 points and six rebounds. But Eaton’s putback with 25.2 seconds remaining tied it at 44, and the Bearcats were unable convert on their final possession of regulation, sending the title game into a four-minute extra session.
Prior to her only 3-pointer of the game at the start of overtime, Eaton was in foul trouble after picking up her fourth foul with 4:35 remaining and went to the bench with Mark Morris’ lead at 37-32.
Ten of the 12 overtime points came from the Eaton identical twins, who each finished with 13 points. Kourtney Eaton was named tournament MVP.
Jamika Parker, named to the all-tournament first team, had nine points and a game-high 15 rebounds in her final high school game for W.F. West. Sophomore Julie Spencer was 9-for-9 from the free-throw line and finished with 13 points for the Bearcats.
The championship game was a first for the program; its previous-best finish at state came in 1989 when the Bearcats placed third at the Class 3A state tournament.
“The girls played a hell of a game, and had a hell of a year,” Weeks said.Meg Wochnick: 360-754-5473 firstname.lastname@example.org www.theolympian.com/southsoundsports