Even in defeat, Wolves showed class, character

We were living large there for a while.

For a couple of days the community was fantasizing about South Kitsap High School bringing home a second state 4A title in a major sport in less than a year — and what’s more, neither trophy would have come in football, the Wolves’ traditional strong suit.

But unlike last year’s surprising state championship in baseball, there would be no fairy tale ending in basketball this year as SK came up short in the title game to Kentwood on Saturday night at the Tacoma Dome.

As difficult as the loss may be to digest — particularly becase this year’s team relied heavily on the talents of departing seniors Adam Bennett and Jake Beitinger — there was much to cheer the morning after, even in defeat.

Who would have thought, for example, five games into the season, when the Wolves’ record stood at 1-4, that they would appear in the tournament at all, let alone come within 16 minutes of winning the title?

At 21-8 entering Saturday night’s championship game, South Kitsap was the only team in Washington state basketball history to qualify for the finals with that many blemishes on its record.

That says a lot about the team’s resiliency and character, and at this level that — even more than wins and losses — is what ultimately counts.

And while we’re handing out kudos, a final tip of the cap to the South Kitsap supporters, who showed considerably better sportsmanship and more class than their Kentwood counterparts throughout the raucous final.

They, like the team, did us proud.

McMahan bats .500

By most accounts, personalities and politics played too large a role this session when 26th District Rep. Lois McMahan (R-Olalla) saw her bill to finish construction of a new Burley-Olalla interchange snubbed in the Democrat-dominated state House — where her plain-spoken ways apparently rub some in the opposition party the wrong way.

On the other hand, McMahan’s bill to remove treatment and counseling as an alternative to jail sentences for sex offenders did pass muster and awaits only the governor’s signature.

Bottom line — the 26th District elected McMahan to fight for the community and make us all safer, not make friends by compromising her core beliefs. Both of those measures fit the definition of what an elected representative should be doing and it’s a credit to McMahan that one of her bills passed and a discredit to the Legislature that the other didn’t.

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