GIRLS BASKETBALL: Huertas-Vining leads Eagles to SPSL championship

Things weren't looking good for the Federal Way girls basketball team Friday night in the South Puget Sound League championship inside the ShoWare Center in Kent.

The Eagles (18-3 overall) trailed by seven points, 22-15, at halftime to the unbeaten and top-ranked Mount Rainier Rams (20-1). But Federal Way and senior guard Darah Huertas-Vining came out smoking in the third quarter and helped the Eagles win the SPSL title with a 58-50 win over the Rams.

Federal Way now takes the SPSL's top seed into the West Central District and will host Union at 7 p.m. Wednesday. Union finished third in the Greater St. Helen's League and beat Jefferson in a loser-out game Saturday.

It was Huertas-Vining who keyed a 30-point third quarter for the Eagles Friday night against Mount Rainier. The senior connected on six of Federal Way's eight 3-pointers during the decisive quarter. In total, Huertas-Vining finished with 25 points and Raven Benton tallied 18 for Federal Way.

For the night, Federal Way was 10 of 19 from beyond the 3-point line, while Mount Rainier was just 1 of 16.

It was the Eagles' second-straight appearance in the SPSL title game. Last year, Federal Way lost to Auburn Riverside before advancing to the Class 4A state championship and losing to Lewis & Clark.


The Raiders (10-14 overall) dropped two-straight games Thursday and Saturday, ending their season. Jefferson lost to Rogers Thurday night, 45-39, in a battle between the two fifth-place teams in the SPSL North and South. The Raiders then lost to Union Saturday in a winner-to-districts, loser-out contest, 50-32.

Jefferson jumped out to an 11-6 lead after the first quarter against Rogers. But the Rams outscored TJ 39-28 in the final three quarters. Jada Piper led the Raiders with 17 points.

Against Union, TJ also jumped out to a first-quarter lead, but couldn't hold it. Piper finished with 14 to lead the Raiders.


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