The WIAA drew a total of 114,056 spectators for its four-day Hardwood Classic in six classifications in Tacoma, Yakima, and Spokane combined.
Nathan Hale boys basketball tickets were the hottest items in the sport this past winter. The draw to see McDonald’s All-American Michael Porter Jr. and teammates like PJ Fuller apparently traveled to the Tacoma Dome for the girls and boys state tournament, dubbed the Hardwood Classic by the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association (WIAA).
The event did increase by one day due to a format change that included seeding teams for the regional round. When comparing just Saturday’s single-game ticket sales for championship matchups like Nathan Hale’s win against Garfield for the Class 3A boys title, the attendance was 9,155 this year compared to 6,050 in 2016.
Factor in the all-tournament tickets and there were 10,283 fans in attendance on March 4, which also included first-time state title wins for Mercer Island (Class 3A) and Kentridge (Class 4A) in girls basketball and Kentwood boys’ first state championship since 2010.
The WIAA experienced a decrease in attendance for the regional round, however. The combined total was 33,307 this year compared to 37,752 in 2016. There were 21 regional sites around the state.
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Overall, the WIAA drew a combined total of 114,056 spectators for the four-day Hardwood Classic in Tacoma, Yakima, and Spokane.
Here’s a complete breakdown of of attendance by location. To get the four-day total attendance numbers, the all-tournament tickets (ATT) were multiplied by four because the pass is theoretically used daily:
Tacoma Dome (Class 4A and 3A)
Wednesday – 6,184
Thursday – 7,661
Friday – 8,231
Saturday – 9,155
ATT – 1,128
Four-Day Total – 35,743
Yakima Valley SunDome (Class 2A and 1A)
Wednesday – 3,172
Thursday – 3,423
Friday – 3,941
Saturday – 5,515
ATT – 1,661
Four-Day Total – 22,965
Spokane Veterans Memorial Arena (Class 2B and 1B)
Wednesday – 2,827
Thursday – 2,671
Friday – 3,397
Saturday – 3,936
ATT – 2,370
Four-Day Total – 22,311
All Sites Combined
Wednesday – 12,183
Thursday – 13,755
Friday – 27,153
Saturday – 40,329
ATT – 5,159
Four-Day Total – 114,056