Three's not a crowd: Decatur boys pick up SPSL North title

By CASEY OLSON, The Mirror

Three boys basketball teams will get to hang a 2007-08 South Puget Sound League North Division championship banner inside their gyms, including the Decatur Gators.

Decatur ended the regular season Friday night with an 84-73 win over Jefferson. The victory moved the Gators to 11-3 in the North Division and leaves them in a three-way tie with Kentridge and Kentwood. Federal Way ended up in fourth place with a 10-4 record in what was one of the most competitive seasons in recent memory.

Now everybody’s attention turns toward the SPSL Tournament, which kicks off Friday night with the fourth and fifth seeds from the North and South divisions teeing it up. The tournament will continue Saturday at Puyallup High School with the top three finishers in the two divisions playing.

Kentridge received the North Division’s No. 1 seed into the SPSL Tournament, thanks to beating fourth-place Federal Way twice during the regular season. Decatur and Kentwood played Tuesday night (after press time) for the second and third seeds.

The Decatur/Kentwood winner will play Bethel (SPSL South No. 2 seed) at noon Saturday at Puyallup High School. The loser will play Spanaway Lake (SPSL South 3) at 10 a.m. in Puyallup.

The Gators were led by the 25 points of freshman Jerron Smith on Friday against Jefferson (6-14, 2-12). Michael Hale tallied 20 points and Marcus Tibbs (12) and Darious Walker (10) also scored in double figures.

Michael Hunter led TJ with 17 points and J.R. Richey chipped in 16 for the Raiders.

Jefferson won its second SPSL North game Thursday over Tahoma, 52-50, thanks to 13 points from David Survine.

The Beamer boys will also be a part of the postseason for the second year in a row. The Titans (9-11 overall) downed Puyallup, 57-50, Friday night to finish 7-7 in the South.

Beamer played a tiebreaker against Puyallup last night with the winner getting the fourth seed and a matchup with Federal Way (13-5 overall, 10-4) at 8 p.m. Friday at Bethel. The loser will play Kentlake (North 5) at 6 p.m. Friday. Puyallup and Beamer split their two regular season games.

The Titans used a balanced scoring attack Friday to down the Vikings. The two teams were tied entering the fourth quarter, but Beamer outscored Puyallup, 18-11, during the final eight minutes. Evan Cook and Alex Hart both scored 12 points each and Andrew Winton added 11.

Girls basketball

The Federal Way Eagles (16-4 overall, 11-3 in league) continued their strong season with a 61-40 win over Kent-Meridian Thursday night. The Eagles, who have won 10 of their last 11 games, will face the Bethel Braves at 4 p.m. at Puyallup High School Saturday in a battle between the two second-place finishers in the North and South divisions.

Federal Way will be joined in the postseason by Jefferson. The Raiders (13-8, 7-7) finished in a tie for fourth place in the North with Kentlake. The two teams played last night for the division’s fourth and fifth seeds to the league tournament (after press time).

Sports editor Casey Olson: 925-5565,

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