Tibbs shoots Decatur boys back to state; No. 1-ranked Federal Way also headed to Tacoma

Decatur senior Marcus Tibbs has already cemented his place as one of the best basketball players to ever walk the halls at the school. But the 6-foot-1 guard added to his already-huge Gator basketball legacy Saturday night when he hit a lay-in with 4 seconds left to send Decatur to its third straight appearance at the Class 4A Boys Basketball State Tournament.

The shot broke a tie and gave the Gators a 64-62 win over the Kentridge Chargers in a West Central District quarterfinal game at Mount Tahoma High School.

The win earns the second-ranked Gators (20-3) a semifinal game Wednesday at 6 p.m. against the Foss Falcons at Puyallup High School. The Falcons, the champions of the Narrows League, beat Kentwood, 50-44, to earn a rematch with the Gators.

Decatur beat Foss in the championship game of the Bill Riley Communities Holiday Classic on Dec. 30, 73-66, at Decatur. Tibbs, sophomore Jerron Smith and junior Jordan McCloud combined to score 59 of the Gators’ points. Both teams were unbeaten at the time.

The Decatur-Foss winner will face the winner of the other West Central District semifinal between No. 1-ranked Federal Way and Curtis Saturday. Federal Way also punched their third-straight ticket to the state tournament with a 75-55 win over Central Kitsap Saturday night. Six teams from the 16-team district tournament advance to the state tournament March 4-7 at the Tacoma Dome.

Tibbs, who has been one of the most clutch fourth-quarter performers during his Decatur career, tallied 11 of his game-high 24 points during the final eight minutes Saturday against Kentridge.

The Chargers (15-8) gave the Gators fits during the first half, taking a 30-26 halftime lead. Decatur cut the Kentridge lead to just one, 43-42, entering the final eight minutes.

The Gators also got 14 points from Smith and 10 from senior Cam Schilling.

Kentridge was led by sophomore guard Gary Bell, who scored 23, and Laron Daniels had 20 for the eighth-ranked Chargers. Kentridge will play Rogers in a loser-out game Wednesday at Foss.

The Gators beat Wilson in the opening round, 79-66, Thursday night thanks to 28 points from Tibbs and 18 from Schilling.

Federal Way 75, Central Kitsap 55 (winner to state)

The No. 1-ranked Eagles are firing on all cylinders and are headed back to the Class 4A state tournament after another impressive win Saturday. Federal Way dominated Central Kitsap Saturday night at West Central District Tournament at Puyallup High School.

The victory earns the Eagles a semifinal game against the Curtis Vikings at 8 p.m. at Puyallup High School Wednesday night. Curtis beat Mount Tahoma in the district quarterfinals Saturday.

Federal Way has won 12 games in a row after a loss to the Kentwood Conquerors on Jan. 17 and are winning them with ease. Their closest game during their streak, which includes wins over five ranked teams, was by six points over No. 2 Decatur in the South Puget Sound League title game, 69-63, two weeks ago.

The Eagles (22-2) have won their two district games by an average of 32.5 points after beating Auburn Riverside Thursday in the opening round, 96-51. Federal Way had five players score in double figures against the Ravens, led by the 19 of Michael Hale. Andre Barrington and Cole Dickerson both tallied 16 points, Jeffrey Forbes had 13 and Jaleel Williams chipped in 10.

Beamer 71, Auburn 68 (loser-out)

The Titans (12-11) won their first-ever district basketball game Saturday night over the Auburn Trojans at Auburn High School. The Titans will play another loser-out West Central District game against Mount Tahoma at 8 p.m. at Mount Tahoma Wednesday, Feb 25. It will be Beamer’s third-straight district game on an opponent’s home floor. The Titans lost to Foss in the opening round Thursday, 63-53. Mount Tahoma is the second seed from the Narrows League and lost to Curtis in the quarterfinals Saturday.

The winner of the Beamer-Mount Tahoma game will play the winner of a game between Bellarmine Prep and Central Kitsap at 6 p.m. Friday at Auburn in a loser-out, winner-to-state contest.

Beamer was led by sophomore guard Napa Mefi, who had a game-high 27 points. Senior Kevin Davis had another monster game for the Titans with his third triple-double of the season. The 6-foot-8 Davis had 22 points, 17 rebounds and 10 blocked shots. Davis also led the Titans with 16 points during their loss to Foss.

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