It had been a while since the Coeur d’Alene girls basketball team played well.
So if last Friday is any indication, Coeur d’Alene most definitely will challenge for the 5A state championship when the tournament begins today at the Idaho Center in Nampa. The Vikings, who have played in four consecutive state finals, will be seeking a third straight title.
The No. 2-ranked Vikings (19-4) begin defense of their state title this afternoon when they take on District III runner-up and top-ranked Boise (22-1) at 2 PST. Previously unbeaten Boise fell to Centennial 44-39 in the District III title game last week.
Lewiston (19-2), which handled CdA 53-41 in the Region I final, will take on traditional qualifier Centennial (21-2) at 7.
Lake City coach Royce Johnston saw up close and personal what CdA is capable of doing when the Vikings ran over his team 58-37 to decide a state berth.
“They could go all the way again,” Johnston said.
And Johnston wouldn’t be surprised if CdA and Lewiston face off one more time in the title game.
First, though, CdA must get past a Boise team that mowed over teams in the Southern Idaho Conference.
CdA coach Dale Poffenroth hopes his young team is prepared for the rigors of state.
“We’re still awfully young,” Poffenroth said. “(But) I think we’ve got a good chance. Lewiston is as good as anybody on their side (of the bracket) and we’re as good as anybody on our side.”
•The 3A tourney is at Skyview High in Nampa.
District I-II champ Priest River (16-6) takes on District III runner-up Fruitland (22-1) at 7. Earlier, District I-II runner-up Kellogg (16-8) meets Marsh Valley (18-4) at 2.
•The 1A Division II tourney is at Nampa High. District I champ Clark Fork (15-5) faces Richfield (18-4) at 12:15.
The Washington State 4A and 3A/2A meets are Friday and Saturday at the Tacoma Dome.
State qualifiers in 4A are Rachael Becker, Hilary Hahn, Molly Sheahan, Kendra Sherman, Danielle Turner, Courtney Butler, Jordan Helgesen, Josie Nesbitt, Catie Pratt and Kodee Kinder from Mead; Stacie Davis, Amber DeMaine and Moriah Knowles from University; and Lily Hoch from Lewis and Clark.
State qualifiers in 3A are Courtney Bray, Amanda Howe, Bri Singer, Alisha Donais and Alexa Condron from Mt. Spokane; Val Meyers from Rogers; and Emily Andrews, Hailey Barry, Morgan Buckenberger, Collen Donohue, Carly Marcella, Jessica Millard, Alana Norman and Nicole Redman from Shadle Park.
Idaho wrestling regionals
The 5A and 4A Region I and 3A District I-II tournaments will be held Friday and Saturday at Lakeland High in Rathdrum.
The top three in 5A, top two in 4A and top four in 3A advance to state, Feb. 26-27 at Pocatello.
Action begins Friday at 5 in just 5A and 3A. The 4A tourney begins Saturday morning at 9 when action in the other tourneys resume. The finals are scheduled for 2:30 p.m.
Coeur d’Alene (5A), Lakeland (4A) and Priest River (3A) are the defending champs.
The 5A regional will be tightly contested. In the latest state rankings, CdA is No. 1, Post Falls second and Lewiston is tied for fourth.