Tucker Haymond had 21 points, including nine in the fourth quarter, as the Bulldogs turned away an Issaquah comeback bid in the fourth quarter.
Garfield’s Tucker Haymond is a senior and one of the area’s top returning scorers. So when Haymond and the fourth-ranked Bulldogs found themselves in a one-possession game in the fourth quarter against No. 9 Issaquah on Friday night, Haymond produced accordingly.
Three times Issaquah cut Garfield’s lead to three points, and three times Haymond answered with a big shot. He finished with 21 points, including nine in the fourth quarter, in the Bulldogs’ 81-66 KingCo 4A basketball win at Garfield.
“In my opinion, Tucker’s the best player in the state,” Garfield coach Ed Haskins said. “He did what he’s supposed to do. He did what his team needed to get us the win.”
Yet it didn’t look like Garfield (2-1 overall, 2-0 league) would need big shots from Haymond or any of his teammates through three quarters.
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The Bulldogs held an 11-point lead at halftime and extended that to 16 early in the third quarter. But Issaquah (2-1, 1-1) didn’t go away.
The Eagles stormed back behind Cory Nevin (17 points), Brian Watson (19) and Jake Henke (12). Guard Ty Gibson scored consecutive buckets that got Issaquah within three, 65-62, with five minutes left.
Both times, the 6-foot-5 Haymond answered with buckets.
“We encouraged our guys at halftime that it was a game of runs and that it was our turn to make a run,” Issaquah coach Jason Griffith said. “But, ultimately, a big-time player took over the game.”
After Gibson’s back-to-back layups, Garfield held Issaquah scoreless for four minutes and went on a 16-0 run.
“We really just locked down on defense,” Haymond said.
Aja Buchanan, a senior guard, hit four three-pointers for Garfield, including three in the first half. He finished with 16 points off the bench.
“He’s a shooter,” Haskins said. “This year is just the first time he’s had the opportunity to actually show what he can do.”
Trevaunte’ Williams also had 16 points for Garfield.
Jayson Jenks: 206-464-8277 or email@example.com