GIRLS BASKETBALL: Huertas-Vining leads Eagles to SPSL championship
By CASEY OLSON
Federal Way Mirror Sports editor
February 13, 2012 · Updated 2:18 PM
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.
Contact Federal Way Mirror Sports editor Casey Olson at firstname.lastname@example.org or (253) 925-5565 ext. 5056.