The Garfield Bulldogs advanced to the WIAA Boys 3A Basketball title game with a dominant, and very physical, performance over the top-seeded Eastside Catholic Crusaders. The win marked the third time this season the Bulldogs defeated the Crusaders – once in the regular season, again in the Metro League title game and Friday afternoon in their state tournament semifinal matchup.
The Bulldogs ran away with the game early as they went on a 27-6 run between the first and second quarters, and took a commanding 33-20 lead in to halftime.
In the second half, the Bulldogs led by as many as 29 points as they cruised to a 71-46 victory.
Sophomore guard Koren Johnson had a tremendous night for the Bulldogs scoring a game-high 24 points. Meanwhile, the Bulldogs low-post bookends Tari Eason and Kendall Munson scored 16 and 15 points, respectively.
Eastside Catholic’s Nolan Hickman scored 13 points, while Syon Blackmon had 11 points and JT Tuimoloau chipped in 10 points to lead the Crusaders.
With the win, the Bulldogs advance to the championship game against the winner of the O’Dea-Rainier Beach semifinal matchup. Eastside Catholic will play the O’Dea Rainier Beach loser for third place in the state tournament.