Sports

Federal Way knocks out Kentwood

Federal Way senior Jason Carlson hit four 3-pointers and senior William Reese added two more in the fourth quarter as Federal Way secured a state berth with a 59-55 win over Kentwood Saturday.

“I do what I gotta do,” Carlson said. “I felt kind of embarrassed after last game. I stayed late at practice and it worked.”

Although he had shot well from long range all season, Carlson was just 1 for 11 from behind the 3-point arc in the two playoff games prior to Saturday’s game. Reese hadn’t shot much better, making just one of five 3-point attempts in the loss to South Kitsap before warming up against Kentwood.

Against Kentwood, Carlson hit a 3-pointer to open the fourth quarter, then Reese hit back-to-back 3-pointers to give Federal Way a 55-47 lead with 3:21 left in the game.

“At practice, coach asked me if I was going to get us to state,” Reese said. “I said, ‘Yeah, coach.’ I had that in my mind. I wanted to succeed. The shots were open and I took them. I like the clutch. I haven’t been in it too many times, but I like it.”

Carlson led Federal Way with 14 points. Senior guard Andre Piper-Jordan had 11, Brad Mahlstedt scored eight, and Reese and Teddy Williams added seven points each.

“Jason and Will stepped it up,” Piper-Jordan said, adding that the 3-pointer “is a big part of our game. It also helps us establish the ball down low.”

Federal Way trailed 17-13 after the first quarter, but worked the ball into 6-foot-7 junior post Nate Sanchez in the second quarter. Sanchez scored 10 of his 12 points in the second quarter — including going 8 of 8 from the free throw line — as Federal Way took a 35-27 lead into halftime.

“We got their big guy in foul trouble and that let me and Jason and Brad get rebounds,” Sanchez said. “We got the ball to me and I hit my free throws. I’ve been trying to focus on that. Midway through the season they weren’t the best, but now I’m doing better.”

Kentwood’s “big guy” was 6-foot-9 junior Jason Mgebroff, the team’s leading scorer who had to sit on the bench for most of the game after getting into early foul trouble.

“We helped make him a non-factor because he was in foul trouble,” said Federal Way senior Brad Mahlstedt. “We wouldn’t have won without him in foul trouble.”

Federal Way now plays Stanwood in the first-round of the state tournament at 10 a.m. today at the Tacoma Dome.

“Even though we’ll have to play a No. 1 team, I feel we can compete with any team as long as we come to play,” Sanchez said.

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