West Valley girls basketball coach Lorin Carlon, who lives in Whitman County exactly halfway between Rosalia and St. John, met Pullman coach Phil Morgan in Steptoe on Sunday evening to exchange video of state tournament opponents and to talk about the 2A draw.
Both take experienced teams to state when the tournament begins Wednesday at the SunDome in Yakima.
Pullman (16-6) opens against East Valley-Yakima at 10:30 a.m. and second-ranked West Valley (22-0) takes on Black Hills at 7:30 p.m.
Clarkston (16-6), the third Great Northern League qualifier, meets Burlington-Edison at 12:30.
“I’m cautious,” Morgan said of the draw. “We’re going to be as prepared as we can be. That’s why we’re exchanging (video).”
Overall, Carlon is happy where his team was placed in the bracket.
“We’re OK with it,” he said of the draw. “They’ll be a good opponent for us.”
In the boys, Deer Park (15-7) meets Wapato at 12:30, WV (15-8) goes against Hockinson at 4 and Clarkston (16-6) faces defending state champ Squalicum at 7:30.
Squalicum, which ended the season ranked No. 1, is on the same side of the bracket with WV and Clarkston.
Other possible contenders on the same side are Mark Morris and Ephrata.
“We’re in the toughest part of the bracket,” WV coach Jay Humphrey said. “Those are very, very good teams.”
In addition to Squalicum, other returning state placers in the boys are Burlington-Edison (second), River Ridge (third), Clarkston (fourth) and Fife (sixth).
The WV and Pullman girls placed third and eighth respectively last year. Other returning trophy winners are Lynden (state champ), Archbishop Murphy (second), Elma (fourth), Prosser (sixth) and Ellensburg (seventh).