By Leah Traxel
It wasn’t the 4A title the No. 2 Rams were hoping for, but another day, another big performance from Brittany McPhee (25 points, 18 rebounds), who led the SPSL champions to a third-place finish with a 56-39 victory over Lake Stevens at the Class 3A state girls’ basketball championships in the Tacoma Dome.
McPhee, The News Tribune’s All-Area and all-state player of the year as a junior, led an early 9-0 run that gave the Rams (27-2) an 18-9 lead. Jordan McPhee and Emily Fiso also scored during the crucial scoring spurt.
“We were able to move the ball well,” Rams coach Bob Bolam said. “It was nice that we were able to get that lead and hold on to it.”
It probably helped that Mount Rainier had experienced this before in last year’s state tournament.
“We had the same situation last year,” Bolam said. “We lost a heartbreaker in the semifinals, (and) our feelings were hurt, and we came back to get third.”
Lake Stevens’ own set of twins, Brooke and Brittney Pahukoa, did their best to make up for the McPhees. The pair scored 21 of the Vikings’ 39 points (13 from Brooke, 9 from Brittney).