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Beamer boys and TJ girls clinch postseason basketball berths
By CASEY OLSON, The Mirror
For the second straight season, the Todd Beamer boys basketball team is postseason bound. The Titans clinched one of the South Puget Sound League South Divisions five berths with a 71-61 victory over Emerald Ridge Tuesday night at home.
The win improved Beamer to 6-7 in the SPSL South and 8-11 overall. Depending on the result of Friday nights regular-season finale (after press time) against Puyallup, the Titans could be as high as the third seed from the South.
The SPSL Tournament is set for Feb. 8 and 9 at Puyallup High School and will feature the top five teams from both the North and South divisions. All 10 teams advance to the West Central District Tournament, which will kick off Feb. 13, along with six teams from the Narrows League.
Senior guard Dakin Wanquist was the difference Tuesday night against Emerald Ridge. Wanquist tallied a game-high 26 points and helped Beamer roll out to a 35-23 halftime lead. Emerald Ridge tightened the game in the third quarter by outscoring the Titans, 18-9, during the eight minutes. But Wanquist and Beamer exploded for a 27-point fourth quarter to put the game out of reach.
Freshman Napa Mefi tallied 15 points for the Titans and Andrew Winton chipped in 13.
The Thomas Jefferson girls also clinched a berth into the postseason with a win Tuesday night. The Raiders downed Decatur, 38-33, to improve to 7-6 in the SPSL North and 13-7 overall. The Raiders could have clinched third place in the North with a win over Tahoma last night (after press time).
The victory over the Gators (1-17, 0-13) was TJs fourth win in its last five games. TJs only loss during that stretch came against unbeaten Kentwood on Jan. 18.
The Raiders held on in the fourth quarter against Decatur Tuesday. Jefferson led 34-21 entering the final eight minutes. Unique Taufaasau led the Raiders with 12 points and Hannah Kiyohara chipped in eight. Tenea Holcomb led Decatur with 11 points.
Federal Way won its fourth game in a row Tuesday over Kentridge, 55-38. Freshman Talia Walton had 20 points and was the only Eagle to score in double figures. Federal Way led 32-18 at halftime.
The Beamer girls (5-14, 3-10) were officially eliminated from postseason contention with a 46-33 loss to Emerald Ridge Tuesday. Mikki Akins led the Titans with 10 points.
The Thomas Jefferson Raiders won Wednesdays All-City Gymnastics Meet at TJ. The Raiders tallied 154.95 points in the four-team meet. Beamer finished second with 138 points, Federal Way was third with 132.85 and Decatur was fourth with 128.2.
Sports editor Casey Olson: 925-5565, email@example.com