Bowmen are ready for the tourney quarterfinal tilt

by: DAN BROOD - AT THE POINT -- Sherwood junior point guard Evan Kitto, shown here in Saturday's state playoff win over Silverton, could be a key player for the Bowmen at the Class 5A state tournament.EUGENE — The Sherwood High School boys basketball team is making its first appearance in the state tournament since 2008.

The Bowmen are pretty happy about that.

Happy, but not satisfied.

Now, Sherwood wants to make some noise at the Class 5A state tournament, which starts today (Thursday) and runs through Saturday at the Matthew Knight Arena in Eugene.

“Now, we want to make a name for ourselves,” Sherwood senior post Jordan Kurahara said following the Bowmen’s 41-31 win over Silverton in a Class 5A state playoff game played Saturday at Sherwood High School.

Sherwood will have a chance to take a step toward that goal tonight, when they face Madison in a state tournament quarterfinal game set to start at 6:30 p.m.

Madison, the No. 3 team out of the Portland Interscholastic League, brings an overall record of 17-9 into tonight’s game in Eugene.

The Senators, who were the No. 16 team in the final OSAA power rankings, scored a 58-55 win at Mountain View, the No. 3 team in the power rankings, to earn their spot in the state tourney.

“I don’t know a lot about Madison,” Sherwood coach Tony Merrill said following the Bowmen’s win over Silverton. “I do know that they have one dynamite guy. We’re going to focus on that game for now, but we really are going to try an enjoy our time at the tournament.”

Madison’s “dynamite guy” is 6-foot-1 senior wing Aubrey Stephens, who was a PIL All-City first-team selection.

by: DAN BROOD - FOR THE DEFENSE -- Sherwood senior Keegan Lawrence (right) is one of the Bowmen's top defenders going into the state tournament.Other key players for the Senators include senior guard Mak Hutson, who was a second-team all-city selection and seniors Adam Wright and Austin Powers, who were both honorable mention picks.

Sherwood, the Northwest Oregon Conference champion and No. 6 team in the final OSAA power rankings, is 20-4 on the season.

The Bowmen are now hoping that they will keep playing at a high level at the tournament.

“We want to go and play the best we can,” Sherwood junior point guard Evan Kitto said. “We want to show what we can do.”

“We just need to play our game,” Bowmen junior wing Ben Milligan said.

“I’m excited to see what we can do,” Sherwood senior forward Lucas Johnson said. “We want to do the best we can.”

“It’s time for us to reassess and set some new goals,” Merrill said. “I think we can do a lot more.”

Sherwood, if it wins tonight, will face either Bend or Churchill in a championship semifinal game Friday at 8:15 p.m. If the Bowmen lose tonight, they’ll meet Bend or Churchill Friday in a consolation semifinal game at 10:45 a.m.

Other teams in the tournament include Jefferson, Wilsonville, West Albany and Eagle Point.

The Class 5A state championship game is slated to be played Saturday at 8:30 p.m. at the Matthew Knight Arena.

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