Tigers Stun Class 2A Bobcats in Season Opener


Napavine boys basketball did not look like the majority of its team was playing in a state football championship exactly one week ago when Tigers played their season-opener at home against Aberdeen Saturday.

Many of the Tigers haven’t picked up a basketball since June until this week, but it didn’t show as they smacked the Bobcats from the start and came away with a 48-35 victory.

“It’s about what I expected,” Napavine coach Rex Stanley said of his team’s season-opening performance. “Some things looked good and some things we need to work on.”

Sophomore James Grose led the offensive attack with a game-high 25 points to go with eight rebounds, while senior Gavin Parker added eight points and Glade Shannon finished with six points and a team-high 10 rebounds.

But it was the Tigers’ defense that was most impressive, which ran a full-court press to precision and stifled the Class 2A Bobcats at every turn, wreaking havoc the entire first half. The Tigers held Aberdeen to just 10 points at the half to take a 25-10 lead going into the locker room.

“This group will show up and work,” Stanley said. “They really give a lot of effort, and that’s what we talked about tonight before the game.”

It was an impressive win for a Tigers’ team, especially considering they were without all-area center Keith Olson, who Stanley said was out for the night. 

Also scoring for Napavine was Cael Stanley and Jarin Prather, who each had four points. Peyton League added a free throw.

Napavine (1-0) hosts Morton-White Pass on Tuesday.