Prep girls basketball: Mountlake Terrace drops final game to Shorewood

Mountlake Terrace’s Riley Zucker is introduced before the final game of the season against Shorewood Monday at Mountlake Terrace High School. (Photo by Mark Hopkins)

Despite losing their final game of the 2014-15 season, the Mountlake Terrace Hawk girls basketball team showed no regrets or despair Monday night, battling on the court until the final buzzer and walking off the court together.

Terrace fell to the Shorewood T-Birds 69-27 at Mountlake Terrace High School and ended their season with a mark of 0-12 in Wesco 3A South play and 1-18 overall.

The Hawks trailed throughout their matchup with the much taller T-Birds, who were led in scoring by the 6-0 Lily Gustafson with 18 points and the 6-2 Taryn Shelley with 13 points.

While it was the T-Birds that soared during the contest, it was the Hawks spirits that were flying high pre-game as the team honored its two seniors, Riley Zucker and Samantha Romanowski. Both were given gifts of flowers, signed basketballs and framed jerseys prior to tipoff.

Romanowski had been expected to provide most of the on-court leadership this season, but didn’t play at all due to a torn ACL suffered last summer. So it was Zucker that was thrust into the role of experienced team captain on a young, inexperienced team. The result was more than the Hawk guard expected.

Though nine inches shorter, Hawk Riley Zucker challenges Shorewood's 6-2 Shelley Taryn Monday night at Mountlake Terrace High School.
Though nine inches shorter, Mountlake Terrace’s Riley Zucker (left) challenges Shorewood’s Shelley Taryn Monday night at Mountlake Terrace High School. (Photo by Jonah Wallace)

“I found a new group of girls to call teammates and a family,” Zucker said after the game. “I think this year not only made me a better player but a better person. I really grew this year in my playing and in everything.”

Zucker led the Hawks in scoring this year, averaging 10 points a game for a team that only averaged 26 points per contest.

For Zucker, it was playing on a squad with no other seniors suiting up for games (and just two juniors — the rest only sophomores and freshmen who hadn’t played on the varsity level before) that ultimately brought on a new maturity in herself.

“We all had to slow down from going 100 miles an hour to going back and learning the basics,” Zucker said. “It made me slow down and find my character. That really helped me grow.”

Zucker said she hopes to continue developing her game and her character after graduation this spring; she plans on attending Everett Community College and playing both basketball and soccer for the Trojans.

“This was my last game playing at this school, but it’s not my last game playing. I’m ready to keep on going and keep on growing,” Zucker said.

– By Doug Petrowski

Prep Girls Basketball: Shorewood at Mountlake Terrace

Shorewood       18        19        16        16        —          69
Terrace             9          9          4          5        —          27

Mountlake Terrace individual scoring: Claire Zucker 8, Skylar Zenk 8, Riley Zucker 6, Jorie Lambert 4, Eliza Sandoval 1, Jasmine Zenk, Ashley Klippert, Maddie Powers, Torrey DeAlba, Juanita Johnson

Shorewood individual scoring: Lily Gustafson 18, Taryn Shelley 13, Katie Taylor 9, Abby Gustafson 9, Ledia Musye 7, Dakota Laut 6, Danica Bernabe 2, Karrin Leazer 2, Mika Morgan 2, Sandra Bojic 1, Jalyn Hizey

Final regular season records: Mountlake Terrace 0-12 in Wesco 3A South, 1-18 overall; Shorewood 5-7, 10-10

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