These capsules are provided by newspapers throughout Idaho, including the Idaho Statesman. Statistics are provided by the teams.
Coach: Kody Ketterling, first season
Road to state: Beat Buhl 43-30 in District IV first round; lost to Kimberly 44-29 in semifinal game; beat Buhl 47-46 in elimination game; beat Kimberly 44-42 in first district championship game and 53-50 in the “if-necessary” championship game.
Key players: G Jessica Tews, sr.; G Sierra Koyle, soph.; F Taylor Oyler, sr.; F Audrey Croy, jr.
Team breakdown: The Wildcats only won six games during the regular season but took four of five — including three elimination games — to win the district championship and earn their first trip to state since 2007. They boast a skilled point guard in Tews, who can shoot, drive or pass, and have balance both inside and out.
Coach: Beth Holt, seventh season
Road to state: Beat Homedale 64-35 in District III semifinals; beat Weiser 48-47 for the district championship.
Key players: P Jarica Martarano, sr. (9.5 ppg, 10 rpg, 2 apg); F Sadie Stutzman, soph. (13 ppg, 8 rpg, 2 spg); P Jandee Carlson, jr. (8.5 ppg, 7 rpg); G Miranda Clinton, jr. (6 ppg, 5 apg).
Team breakdown: With seven new players on the varsity after going two-and-out at state last year, the Grizzlies are just now hitting their stride. Holt says her team’s last four games have been the best games they’ve played. “We are peaking at the right time,” Holt said.
Marsh Valley Eagles
Coach: Kyle McQuivey
Road to state: Beat Bear Lake in first round, beat Snake River in championship game
Key players: G Shantae Brown, F Sarah Viehweg
Team breakdown: Much of Marsh Valley’s success depends on their ability to get the ball to Viehweg in the low post. The junior scored 25 points in the title game against Snake River and has been one of the most dominant centers in southeast Idaho this season.
Priest River Spartans (defending champions)
Coach: Gary Stewart, fifth season
Road to state: defeated Bonners Ferry 55-39 in District I semifinals, lost to Timberlake 48-27 in district title game, defeated Bonners Ferry 45-42 in second-place game.
Key players: F Liz Halcro, jr., (11.5 ppg, 10 rpg); G/F Holly Hirst, sr. (10.5 ppg, 6 rpg); G Steffie Pavey, so. (7 ppg, 5 steals).
Team breakdown: Priest River lost starting forward and 2010 Intermountain League Most Valuable Player Melissa Hopkins to a torn ACL during volleyball season. “It took us half of the season getting comfortable to playing without her in the lineup,” Stewart said. “We’ve got seven or eight different players that score for us, which may make us a better team than last year. I told our girls during the first practice of the season that we’re the defending state champs until someone knocks us off. Last year, I thought we could do something and get a trophy. This year, we’re going to see where the chips fall.”
Snake River Panthers
Coach: Steven Morton
Road to state: Beat American Falls in first round, lost to Marsh Valley in championship game, beat Bear Lake in elimination game, beat South Fremont in play-in game
Key players: F Eden Van Orden, F Jocelyn Harper
Team breakdown: Snake River tends to succeed because of post play from Van Orden and Harper. Van Orden will step out and shoot occasionally, while Harper does her best work around the basket. Several of the Panthers played on the volleyball state champions and are used to state tournament pressure
Coach: Todd Jensen, fifth season
Road to state: Beat Salmon 52-27 in District VI first round; beat Teton 60-34 in semifinals; beat South Fremont 54-32 in finals.
Key players: F Georgia Brown, jr. (11.8 ppg, 7.9 rpg, 1.2 blocks); G Vanessa Hawkes, sr. (9.0 ppg, 2.8 steals); G Kimber Choffin, sr. (9.4 ppg, 86.1 pct. FT, 3.2 apg).
Team breakdown: Sugar-Salem won its fourth straight district title and is playing in its fifth straight tournament in coach Todd Jensen’s fifth year in the program. He has won a trophy every year at state with Sugar-Salem, compiling a 10-2 and winning the title in 2009 and 2007. He also won the title while at Marsh Valley in 2005, making his career state tournament record 13-2. … Sugar-Salem’s has not lost a game against a 3A opponent this season. Its five losses came against 4A schools Shelley and Rigby (twice each) and two-time defending 2A champ West Jefferson (once). … Junior forward Georgia Brown has scored 15 points and grabbed 7.8 rebounds per game in her last five games.
Coach: Matt Miller, sixth season
Road to state: Beat Kellogg 53-27 in District I semifinals; beat Priest River 48-27 in championship game.
Key players: F Cassie Thompson, sr. (22 ppg, 11 rpg); F Caitlyn Nichols, sr., (8 ppg, 7 rpg); G Kara Wenstrom, jr., (11 ppg, 5 apg),
Team breakdown: Timberlake is making its second trip to state in school history, going 0-2 in 2008-09, eliminated by Fruitland — this year’s first-round opponent. “We’re really not sure what to expect when it comes to them,” Miller said of the 3A tournament field. “We played Fruitland real close two years ago at state and it was a close game, so we’ll see how the girls react when they get down there.” Timberlake won the Intermountain League last year, but lost to Priest River for the district title and lost to Kellogg for the second berth to state — then watched from home as Priest River defeated Kellogg in the state title game. … Thompson has signed to play for the University of Portland. … This was the school’s first district championship in its 13-season history.
Coach: Nick Reed, third season
Road to state: Beat Payette 62-45 in District III semifinals; lost to Fruitland 48-47 for the district championship; beat Payette 50-36 in second-place game.
Key players: Marquita Palmer, jr. (13 ppg, 8 rpg); McKenzie Johnson, jr. (12 ppg); Kenzie Eisenbarth, sr. (8 ppg, 8 rpg); Shae Duren, sr. (9 ppg, 5 rpg, 3 apg); Nella Redman, jr. (8 ppg, 5 rpg).
Team breakdown: The Wolverines, who finished third at state a year ago, went unbeaten against Idaho teams during the regular season. Though they enter as the league’s No. 2 seed, the Wolverines shouldn’t be overlooked. They lost the district championship game on a 30-footer at the buzzer and all five starters are returning lettermen.