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The Coupeville Middle School girls basketball season is fast approaching for players like Jada Heaton. (Photo by Corinn Parker)

Get in the gym early.

Practices for the upcoming Coupeville Middle School girls basketball season kick off later this month, but there are three opportunities for prospective players to hit the floor before then.

The Wolf SWISH hoops team is opening their final three practices to any interested CMS girls, starting Monday, Jan. 6.

The other sessions are Jan. 13 and 15, with all practices running from 6-8 PM in the middle school gym.

“We’ll be working on fundamentals and doing some fun competitive drills,” said SWISH coach Fred Farris. “It would be a great opportunity for those still deciding if they want to play this season.”

Practice for the middle school season begins Jan. 21, and the 10-game season starts Feb. 6, with a home contest against Northshore Christian Academy.

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Having played a major role in Coupeville winning a SWISH basketball championship, Lauren Marrs enjoys the moment. (Emili Marrs photo)

Savina Wells slices ‘n dices the defense. (Corinn Parker photo)

The champs. (Photo courtesy Corinn Parker’s dad)

Katie Marti is ready to wreck you. (Corinn Parker photos)

Lyla Stuurmans (3) brings the heat. “Oh, son. They are gonna need that first aid kit so bad when I get done carvin’ up that defense!!”

This is a Cinderella story.

A tale of 12 hardwood hustlers from Cow Town who went to the big city, beat the Vegas odds, and stunned the hoops world as they exited the gym, hoisting an improbable, but very-deserved championship trophy.

Go back to the start of the Skagit County Parks and Rec SWISH basketball season, back when Coupeville’s 7th/8th grade girls team was 0-4.

Now jump forward to Saturday, when the Wolves entered the postseason tourney as the #4 seed in a five-team draw.

Capping a wild ride, Coupeville won three games in one afternoon, KO’d the tourney’s top two teams, and emerged as the Silver Division champions.

Plus, they got to eat a bunch of pizza in between games, so score another win.

With the Saturday sweep, the Wolves finished their season on a five-game winning streak, having avenged several of those early-season losses.

And those tourney wins?

Not a close score to be found, as Coupeville drilled #5 seed Friday Harbor 23-8, whacked #1 seed Monroe 33-21, then walloped #2 seed Mt. Bakery 33-24 in the championship game.

“This team just keeps amazing me with their heart and winning spirit,” said Wolf coach Fred Farris. “They really made this old ball coach super proud!!”

How the day played out:

 

Friday Harbor:

Having routed their opening rival during the regular season, the Wolves used the game to give their less-experienced players plenty of floor time, while also making sure everyone on the roster scored this season.

It worked out beautifully as both Reese Wilkinson and Jada Heaton knocked down their first buckets, with Savina Wells setting up the duo with precise passes.

Wells paced Coupeville with a game-high 13 points, with Lauren Marrs, Madison McMillan, and Brionna Blouin chipping in with two points apiece.

 

Monroe:

Taking the role of David in a David vs. Goliath showdown, the Wolves stunned the tourney’s top seed, avenging an early-season loss to a dangerous team.

“After the opening round game the girls were focused on playing “championship” basketball,” Fred Farris said. “Their tenacity was at an all-time high.

“They battled for every loose ball and lifted their teammates up when they got knocked to the floor by a physical Monroe squad.”

Trailing by four at the half, Coupeville rallied by “breaking their full-court press and turning it into instant offense.”

Scrappy Wolf guard Lyla Stuurmans, playing like mom Sarah did back in the day, went nuclear, ripping off back-to-back coast-to-coast runs for game-breaking buckets.

Staggered, Monroe had no answer, and the game turned into a romp as Marrs and Blouin stuck the dagger in by launching three-balls which hit nothing but the bottom of the net.

Wells was top scorer with 11, while Stuurmans netted a season-high 10, and Marrs banged away for five. Blouin (3), McMillan (2), and Mia Farris (2) also scored.

 

Mt. Bakery: 

A bit sluggish after a long, pizza-filled break, the Wolves got things going thanks to their own full-court zone press, which they recently started working on in practice.

It was an immediate winner, helping Coupeville bolt out to a 16-8 lead at the half.

Lauren, Taylor (Brotemarkle), Mia, and Lyla forced many ball-hawking traps with Savina and Madison stealing all the long passes, creating some easy looks for us at the rim,” Fred Farris said.

“The girls never looked back! Lauren, Lyla, and Savina really were impressive leaders throughout the day.”

Putting a bow on a season in which she averaged 13 points a game, Wells tossed in a game-high 20, with Blouin (6), Marrs (5), and Mia Farris (2) also making the nets dance a happy dance.

 

Final season scoring stats:

Savina Wells – 143
Lauren Marrs – 52
Brionna Blouin – 23
Madison McMillan – 17
Lyla Stuurmans – 16
Mia Farris – 7
Skylar Parker – 6
Katie Marti – 4
Chloe Marzocca – 4
Taylor Brotemarkle – 2
Jada Heaton – 2
Reese Wilkinson – 2

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Skylar Parker netted her first points of the season Saturday, as Coupeville’s SWISH squad swept a doubleheader. (Corinn Parker photos)

The Wolves prepare for an in-bounds play.

Savina Wells (with ball) went off for a season-high 29 points in Coupeville’s upset of Mount Baker.

They’re on the prowl.

Sweeping a doubleheader Saturday, the Coupeville SWISH girls basketball team is riding a hot streak heading into the postseason tourney.

After scorching Friday Harbor 29-20, then earning some sweet payback by toppling Mount Baker 40-37, the Wolves have won three of their last four games.

The postseason tourney, a one-day, double-elimination affair pitting five teams against each other, goes down next Saturday, Dec. 14.

Coupeville opens against Friday Harbor.

The Wolves have to be feeling pretty good about that match-up after romping to a win Saturday while conserving their most-experienced players, limiting them to just a single quarter of play.

Those girls — Brionna Blouin, Savina Wells, Lauren Marrs, and Lyla Stuurmans — took on the role of distributors, setting their still-developing teammates up for buckets.

Skylar Parker stood tall for Coupeville, knocking down three long-range jumpers.

She, Taylor Brotemarkle, and Mia Farris, who also had six steals, all recorded their first field goals of the season during the win.

“I am so proud of their selfless effort and they did an awesome job getting good shots for their less-experienced teammates,” Coupeville coach Fred Farris said of his veterans.

He also praised the play of Madison McMillan, who “really rebounded well and was a force on defense.”

Wells (7), Parker (6), and Marrs (4) led the balanced scoring attack, with McMillan, Blouin, Katie Marti, Mia Farris, Chloe Marzocca, and Brotemarkle chipping in with a bucket apiece.

Jada Heaton and Reese Wilkinson rounded out the Wolf roster, playing inspired defense.

Returning for the nightcap, the Wolves found themselves staring down a highly-ranked team they had lost to by a single point the first time out.

How to proceed? Simple.

“We played our best game of the year,” Fred Farris said.

Wells was at the heart of things, throwing down a season-high 29 points while corralling 16 rebounds.

Zinging out to a 9-0 lead, the Wolves led by as many as 14 before a “scrappy and well-coached” Baker team rallied in the late going to narrow things.

As he savored the victory, Fred Farris found special joy in seeing all of his players contribute.

Savina really dominated the stat sheet and had her best game of the year, but everyone had a hand in this hard-fought victory,” he said. “Bri had her best day on the court today, making some key defensive steals and great passes in both games.

“Today we made big strides. It really is pretty cool to have a front-row seat to see these girls develop as basketball players and teammates,” Farris added. “We head into next week’s tournament with some momentum and some well-earned confidence.”

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Coupeville’s Savina Wells (middle), Jada Heaton (right) and Taylor Brotemarkle (headband) clamp down on defense. (Corinn Parker photos)

Lyla Stuurmans has been a steady point guard for the Wolves.

Lauren Marrs is a deadly outside shooter.

Mia Farris gave Coupeville “a spark on defense” Saturday.

One basket away from a major upset.

Playing their “best game of the year,” the Coupeville SWISH girls basketball squad rallied late Saturday, but fell just shy of toppling powerhouse Mount Baker in a 26-25 thriller.

Returning to action after their bye week, the Wolves stormed back from seven down with 3:30 to play, but needed a tick or two more on the clock to make the miracle fully happen.

“With another possession or two, I would have loved our chances, as I felt the momentum was on our side,” said Coupeville coach Fred Farris. “Everyone got involved and our team passing was much improved.

“Real proud of all the girls, who impressed me with their teamwork, energy, and effort!”

CMS 7th grader Savina Wells paced the Wolves with 12 points and a game-high 17 rebounds, while Lauren Marrs knocked down seven points.

Katie Marti, Madison McMillan, and Brionna Blouin chipped in with a bucket apiece, with Marti’s basket, her first of the season, coming off of “a great offensive rebound and put back.”

After falling behind early, the Wolves played strongly in the second half, with everyone on the 12-player roster chipping in with a contribution.

Coupeville got the looks it wanted, but the basket didn’t always play fair.

“We got up a lot of good open shots that just didn’t fall,” Fred Farris said. “Savina was a force on the boards again and Lyla (Stuurmans) really did a great job against their pressure.

Lauren really stepped up in a leadership role and helped rally the girls to a frantic late game comeback,” he added. “Mia (Farris) and Taylor (Brotemarkle) really gave us a spark on defense in their limited time on the court.”

Stuurmans snared seven rebounds, with McMillan and Brotemarkle making off with four apiece.

Skylar Parker, Jada Heaton, Chloe Marzocca, and Reese Wilkinson rounded out the Wolf roster.

Coupeville returns to Skagit County the next two Saturdays as the SWISH season wraps up.

The Wolves close the regular season Dec. 7 with a doubleheader against Friday Harbor and Mount Baker, then compete in the postseason tourney the following weekend.

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Jada Heaton lines up a free throw. (Corinn Parker photos)

Savina Wells slices ‘n dices the defense.

Wolves (l to r) Chloe Marzocca, Lauren Marrs, and Skylar Parker ponder the fate of the universe.

Taylor Brotemarkle, gettin’ ready to wreck people.

Reese Wilkinson and Savina Wells wait for a rebound.

Katie Marti (far left) and Heaton get out on the run, as Wells pushes the ball.

Lyla Stuurmans is locked in.

Coupeville coach Fred Farris lays down some hoops wisdom to a receptive audience.

Heaton enjoys her time on the court.

No games, but plenty of pics.

The Coupeville 7th/8th grade SWISH girls basketball team had a rare bye Saturday, giving the Wolves a chance to rest up for the stretch run.

With three weeks left in the season, we take a moment to catch up, and peruse some photos.

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