SPORTS: Port Angeles girls basketball team rips Olympic to advance to state playoffs for first time in seven years

TACOMA — The Port Angeles girls basketball team is back at state for the first time in seven years.

The Roughriders, the No. 3 seed in the West Central District tournament, ripped Olympic League rival Olympic 77-37 at Foss High School to cruise to the district semifinals Thursday night.

Port Angeles (19-4) advances to play the winner between Sumner and Kingston at Curtis High School in University Place at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday.

The winner of that game goes on to play for the district championship while the loser plays for the third and fourth seeds to state. Both games are on Monday.

The Riders have beaten Kingston, an Olympic League team, twice but lost by 10 points to Sumner in a subdistrict game.

“It will be a good game either way,” Port Angeles coach Mike Knowles said.

“We beat Kingston twice but they were really close games.”

Port Angeles, which was last at state in 2004, tuned up for the semifinals by beating a known Olympic League foe by 40 points, pretty much the same point spread that the Riders beat the Trojans in the other two games.

But this game didn’t look like it would go that way early on.

The Trojans led 16-14 after hitting a mid-court 3-pointer at the first-quarter buzzer.

“That was a wake-up call for us,” Knowles said. “You have to give Olympic credit. They came out with a lot of energy and they played tough.

“They just couldn’t keep it up.”

The Riders held the Trojans to four points in the second quarter to lead 34-20 at halftime and never looked back.

Olympic was held to 17 points in the second half while Port Angeles scored 43.

Jessica Madison scorched the nets for 27 points and has pushed her school career scoring record past 1,800 points to 1,826.

She has two more district games and at least two state games to keep adding to the record.

Two other players scored in double figures for the Riders, with Kiah Jones sinking 17, and Alison Knowles scoring 15. Alison is the coach’s daughter.

Shannon Jackson scored 12 points for Olympic while Jalyn Halstead had 11.

The Riders didn’t record rebounds but “Taylyn Jeffers had a ton of them,” Knowles said.

Port Angeles 77, Olympic 37

Olympic 16 4 13 4 — 37

Port Angeles 14 20 22 21 — 77

Individual Scoring

Olympic (37)

Quitevis 7, Jones 2, Payne 3, Jackson 12, Halstead 11.

Port Angeles (77)

K. Jones 17, Knowles 15, Walker 2, Northern 2, Madison 27, Johnson 6, Rodocker 2, Jeffers 6.

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