The Chargers have found more success this season: They are 4-10 and trail Oak Harbor by two games for second place in the 3A Wesco North. The Getchell players set a goal at the beginning of the season to place at least second in the North Division and while those hopes have taken a bit of beating of late, they remain alive.
"We expected to see improvements from last year, for sure," Chargers head coach Corby Schuh said. "You establishing the program last year and kind of coming up with our core values and just playing hard and being competitive, we are kind of starting to see that pay off. We've hit the weight room pretty hard and we are starting to get a little bit stronger, which has helped us. We've definitely seen some improvements, but we've still got a long ways to go."
The Chargers lack a signature victory over a state-quality team, but they do have several wins this season that prove that they are learning how to finish games. Against Lakewood just before Christmas, Getchell fell behind 20-2 early, but methodically trimmed the Cougars' lead until the Chargers had come all the way back and earned a 69-62 victory.
A week earlier, Elijah Jordan scored 31 points to lead the Chargers to an 80-74 win over Everett in double overtime. Two weeks before that, Omar Sakin-Romulus tipped in a missed shot at the buzzer to beat Granite Falls 80-78 for the Chargers' first win of the season.
All three are victories MG can build on.
"Honestly, to me, that double overtime game, winning over Everett, that's definitely the big moment," Jordan said. "That's never happened to me before -- double overtime -- that's very big."
Guard Nathen Grimm saw the victory over Granite Falls as a key moment for the Chargers.
"We only had one last year, so we didn't really think, 'Oh we got that win off our chest so now we are good,'" he said. "We thought, 'OK, this is what it feels like and we want more of it. So let's get some more.' So we got three more already and the season's not over yet."
Since the Lakewood win, times have gotten tough. The Chargers' schedule has included Mariner, Glacier Peak, Mountlake Terrace and Shorewood since earning their fourth victory, Getchell has dropped all four games.
"We've kind of come to a screeching halt after that game," Schuh said. "We hit winter break and we got some time off and then we came back and we've played some good teams since winter break. To say did (the Lakewood win) help us? I think it's still something that we can come back to as we make this push towards the end of the season and hopefully put ourselves in a position to make the playoffs. I think it is still there that we can use, but I think we have kind of hit a tough road here with some tough teams."
The fourth Marysville Getchell victory of the season lacked the drama of the other three games, but it did come against its crosstown rival, Marysville Pilchuck. The girls and boys teams for Marysville Getchell and Marysville Pilchuck face each other for a second time this season on Saturday at Marysville Getchell High School. The girls and the boys play back-to-back in a night coined "Marysville Madness."
"It's just a great opportunity to bring everyone together and have the girls play first and then the boys play after it and just have everybody here," Schuh said.
The first time the two boys teams played each other this season the game was held at Marysville Pilchuck.
For the HG players, getting pumped up to play their rival doesn't pose a challenge.
"The first time, it was a great experience," guard Zander Seymer said. "It was loud. In that big of a gym, being that loud, that's impressive. We were screaming at the top of our lungs trying to yell out a play. To come in here, in our smaller gym, I'm kind of excited and looking forward to what that's going to bring. The rivalry is good and positive. The players really aren't the ones that are being the mean ones to each other, it's mainly the fans."
Seymer played football for Marysville Getchell and his Chargers lost to Marysville Pilchuck 42-7. Getchell's victory over the Tomahawks earlier this season was Seymer's first win over rival MP in any sport.
He admits, it felt pretty good.
"I definitely felt a little bit of revenge," Seymer said. "The football game, that was kind of a little bit embarrassing. In basketball, of course we want to win every game, that game a little more because it's our rival I guess you would say. It was a big win.
"It was really nice. It was a good feeling."
Aaron Lommers covers prep sports for The Herald. Follow him on Twitter @aaronlommers and contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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