The McCloud Logger varsity boys basketball team is heading into the playoffs as a No. 2 seed after finishing its first regular season in 16 years with 55-46 Senior Night victory Friday over Hayfork.
Two wins over Hayfork in three days lifted the Loggers to 8-4 and a third place finish in the Evergreen League.
With a 9-8 overall record, McCloud is scheduled to host Ipakanni Early College Charter School of Oroville in a first round Northern Section Division 7 playoff game Tuesday night, Feb. 12, at 7 p.m.
With a win, the Loggers would then host a semifinal game against either No. 3 Hayfork or No. 6 Greenville on Thursday, Feb. 14.
The Division 7 championship game is tentatively scheduled for Feb. 23 at Shasta College in Redding.
McCloud coach Todd Carson said, “Being seeded #2 is great for us because it means we are more likely to have home games in the playoffs.”
Carson said the Loggers didn’t talk about the playoffs at the start of the season but had a goal of improving every day. Their goal remains the same going into the postseason, “to improve as players, people and as a team,” he said.
He noted that Ipakanni senior Earl Johnson Jr. scored 71 points in one game this season, and the Loggers “expect to work really hard to contain him.”
Johnson is averaging 35 points per game.
Friday’s Senior Night game in McCloud started out close in the first half. The Loggers led 43-37 after three quarters, and stayed ahead in the final period.
Ramon Strandberg scored 16 points for McCloud, Zach Dutton 14, Seth Rubin 10, Mawolin Summers 8, David Wolfe Jr. 4, and Alex Olson 3.
Senior Seth Rubin said, “I had a good time playing on a good team. Good sportsmanship all the way around.”
Carson said, “It was a gritty win. The seniors had a great night and showed great leadership.”
Principal Jessica Bowman said, “This being Senior Night, we want to show how important our seniors are leading the way for the rest of the high school. They’ve really set the tone for the rest of the school. We are really happy to have this tradition back in McCloud High School.”
At the beginning of the varsity boys game, senior basketball players Ethan Woolery, Destiny Summers, Alex Olson, and Seth Rubin, and basketball program supporter senior Morgan Miller were acknowledged, given a framed photo, and had their picture taken with their parents.
The McCloud varsity boys also defeated Hayfork in Hayfork last Wednesday, 64-57. In that game, Mawolin Summers scored 18, Zach Dutton 17, David Wolfe 15, Ramon Strandberg 12, and Seth Rubin 2.