Richland’s Colten Northrop breaks down win over Mount Rainier in 4A state tournament opening round
In the past decade, Mount Rainier High School has played five games at the boys basketball state championships.
In the past two seasons, Richland has survived seven games in the Tacoma Dome.
That kind of experience is invaluable this time of year — and the fifth-ranked Bombers showed why in sweeping aside the No. 13 Rams, 81-51, in the opening round Wednesday afternoon of the Class 4A tournament.
Richland (21-4) earned a quarterfinal date Thursday against Federal Way. Tipoff is at 12:15 p.m. The Rams are out.
If the Bombers bring back the same offensive crispness they showcased Wednesday, they could give the Eagles a run for their money.
Richland shot 50.8 percent from the floor against the Rams, including a 15 of 26 effort in the first half as the Bombers built a 34-14 lead.
“I wish a few more (shots) would have fallen … to put us in a competitive game, which is where we thrive,” Mount Rainier coach Brandon Horstman said. “It never got to that point.”
Whereas the Rams (18-9) were settling for outside jumpers, the Bombers were making quick passes — and getting easy shots.
And in the second half, they started draining 3-pointers — eight of them. Leading scorer Colten Northrop made three of them en route to his game-high 24 points.
“Our (state) experience helped us a lot,” Northrop said. “We knew how to come to play. We are all seniors. This is our last chance.”
Guard Amanuel Gebreziabher led the Rams with 18 points in the school’s first state trip since 2012.
“It was a great year for us,” Horstman said.
NO. 13 MOUNT RAINIER
NO. 5 RICHLAND
MR – Shooting: 17 of 72 (23.6 percent). Free throws: 13 of 19 (66.4). Turnovers: 8.
R – Shooting 31 of 61 (50.8 percent). Free throws 11 of 15 (73.3). Turnovers: 17.
MR –Amanuel Gebreziabher 18, Kolten Lerwick 8, Robert Wright 6, Yadel Hedego 6, Michael Nelson 13.
R – Dhaunye Guice 12, Cody Sanderson 12, Garrett Streufert 10, Colten Horthrop 24, Jack Schuster 7, Conner Hofstad 9, Pierce Thompson 5, Matthew Kump 2.