Staying alive: Spartans win crucial game over Redmond

The scenario was cut and dry: Win and keep playoff hope alive, lose and start thinking about next season.

The scenario was cut and dry: Win and keep playoff hope alive, lose and start thinking about next season.

The Skyline boys rose to the challenge Tuesday night on their home court, routing Redmond 53-32.

“It was a must win,” Spartan coach J. Jay Davis said. “Our season was over if we didn’t show up.”

Skyline showed up in every facet of the game, converting its offense opportunities and shutting down Redmond on defense. The Spartans hit 19 of 38 shot attempts (50 percent) and held the Mustangs to 12-for-53 (22 percent) shooting for the game. Redmond was just 4-for-33 (12 percent) in the second half — in large part to not having an answer for Skyline’s sagging zone defense.

“The last couple of games we’ve played that zone and it’s worked real well,” senior guard Nick Crossan said.

Crossan was key to Skyline’s offensive success, scoring 24 points — just two shy of his season-high. He was 7-for-12 from the field, 4-for-7 behind the three-point line and 6-for-6 from the free throw line.

Crossan said he took a special focus into Tuesday’s game.

“It wasn’t really about senior night, it was about winning,” he said. “We really need to win these two last games to get in the playoffs.”

Crossan scored the final five points of the second quarter, including a deep three-pointer that helped the Spartans to a 26-20 halftime advantage. Sophomore Kasen Williams also came up clutch in the final minutes of the first half. With just over three minutes on the clock, he took a miss from teammate Cory Hutsen and skied above the rim for a two-handed dunk.

“I’m always looking for an opportunity to get a board and just flush it down,” he said. “It’s what the crowd likes to see.”

Skyline carried the momentum into the second half, going on a 11-0 run to start the third quarter. Austin Weige started the barrage with a baseline three-pointer and Hutsen and Crossan scored four apiece for a 37-20 lead.

The victory improved Skyline to 6-9 in KingCo play and 8-11 overall. The Spartans moved into a tie with Woodinville (6-9, 8-11) for the eighth and final league playoff spot. Bothell (7-8) and Ballard (7-8) also sit on the edge of making the playoffs, each with one game remaining.

“We need help, but regardless of what happens, we’ve got to show up Friday and play,” Davis said.

Skyline hosts rival Issaquah at 8 p.m., Friday. The Eagles beat the Spartans 58-40 on Jan. 16. Davis expects an intense atmosphere with a playoff spot on the line, and a chance to get revenge against a heated rival.

“You can’t ask for more, right?” he said.

Other games

Issaquah crushes Newport

Issaquah outscored Newport in every quarter Tuesday night, cruising to a 66-44 victory on senior night.

The Eagles erupted led 34-18 at halftime, behind a 21-7 run in the second quarter. Issaquah senior Robby Primrose led all scorers with 25 points. Ten different Eagles scored en route to the victory.

Issaquah improved to 10-5 in league and 11-8 overall with the win. Issaquah travels to Skyline at 8 p.m., Friday for its final regular season game.

Eastside rally comes up short

Eastside Catholic fought from behind, but came up just shy to Seattle Prep, 55-52, Tuesday night.

The Crusaders trailed by 11 after three quarters, 43-32, before erupting for 20 points in the fourth quarter. Connor Holden Eastside with a season-high 15 points. Troy Perry added 10 for the Crusaders, who fell to 2-13 in the Metro League and 5-13 overall.

Eastlake falls to Garfield

Eastlake stayed with league-leader Garfield through the first half of Tuesday night’s game, before falling 76-51.

The Wolves trailed 14-10 after one quarter and 28-20 at halftime. The Bulldogs erupted for 28 points in the third quarter, however, to run away.

Michael Russo led Eastlake with 14 points. Tony Wrotten Jr. scored a game-high 23 for Garfield. Eastlake fell to 2-13 in league and 3-16 overall with the loss. The Wolves close out the regular season at 8 p.m., Friday at rival Redmond.