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Idaho high school boys basketball state tournaments 2024: Scouting reports, predictions

Will get Owyhee and Lapwai get redemption? Is third time the charm for Pocatello? Who's going to come out in a loaded 3A? And will anyone but a WIC team win in 2A?

The Idaho boys state basketball tournaments are here once again. Every year, they’re filled with storylines that capture everyone’s attention and hearts.

What are the biggest ones to follow this time around? SBLive Idaho has you covered with our guide:


Meridian Owyhee Idaho boys basketball state playoffs orr 202310


Games at Ford Idaho Center, Nampa

No. 4 Madison (22-2) vs. No. 5 Capital (17-8), noon

No. 1 Owyhee (21-3) vs. No. 8 Middleton (15-9), 2 p.m.

No. 2 Coeur d’Alene (20-3) vs. No. 7 Lake City (16-9), 5 p.m.

No. 3 Timberline (20-4) vs. No. 6 Eagle (17-9), 7 p.m.



It’s really the Storm and the rest of the field. They’ve been so dominant this season that No. 2 Madison lost to them by 19 points. Their only blemishes have come to nationally ranked California teams. Owyhee will also be extra motivated after being upset in the first round last year, especially with all five starters back.


The Bobcats have placed at state in four out of the last six years. They’re also tied with Snake River and McCall-Donnelly for the longest active winning streak in the state at 18 games. Madison does have the top defense (43.1 points per game) in the classification, as well.

DARKHORSE: Coeur d’Alene

Like Owyhee, the Vikings haven’t lost to a team from Idaho this season. They beat Sierra Vista, which is the 10th-rated team in the entire state of Nevada. Coeur d'Alene brings in a 10-game winning streak. The only question is its postseason experience. This is the Vikings' first time going to state in 12 years.



G Liam Campbell, Owyhee, sr.

G Nash Humpherys, Madison, jr.

G Jackson Rasmussen, Owyhee, jr.

G Carter Rupp, Coeur d’Alene, jr.

F Berrett Wilson, Madison, sr.

PLAYER TO WATCH: Liam Campbell, Owyhee

The 6-foot-5-inch, 180-pounder is already a two-time first-team all-state player and a state champion. He’s the likely 5A Player of the Year this season. Campbell leads the top scoring offense (71.2 ppg) at 17.3 points to go with 4.8 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game. He is signed with USC.


Quarterfinal picks:

Madison over Capital

Owyhee over Middleton

Coeur d’Alene over Lake City

Timberline over Eagle

Semifinal picks:

Owyhee over Madison

Timberline over Coeur d’Alene

Championship pick:

Owyhee 64, Timberline 52


pocatello hillcrest idaho idhsaa boys basketball state playoffs 2023 orr4


Games at Rocky Mountain HS, Meridian and Idaho Center, Nampa

No. 4 Ridgevue (15-7) vs. No. 5 Twin Falls (15-10), noon

No. 1 Pocatello (19-5) vs. No. 8 Sandpoint (12-12), 2 p.m.

No. 2 Hillcrest (17-6) vs. No. 7 Blackfoot (11-13), 5 p.m.

No. 3 Bishop Kelly (18-5) vs. No. 6 Minico (13-10), 7 p.m.


FAVORITE: Hillcrest

The Knights are the two-time defending state champions and have arguably the most unstoppable player within the classification in Isaac Davis. The BYU signee is averaging 14.3 points and 7.4 rebounds per game. But three other players on this team are averaging double figures for the classification's top offense (71.9 ppg.)

CONTENDER: Pocatello

Hillcrest’s aforementioned titles have both come at the Thunder’s expense. But they’ll likely get a third and final shot at them. And their chances are pretty good, especially with reigning 4A player of the year Julian Bowie. The Boise State signee leads the second-best offense at 66.5 ppg.

DARKHORSE: Bishop Kelly

The Knights, who are state for the 11th time in 12 years, didn’t win their district championship. But that might actually make them more dangerous. They had racked off 14 consecutive wins before then. Bishop Kelly has seven players averaging at least 5.0 points per game. It beat 5A qualifier Eagle.



G Julian Bowie, Pocatello, sr.

C Isaac Davis, Hillcrest, sr.

C Gage Ontiveros, Pocatello, sr.

G Ike Sutton, Hillcrest, sr.

F Tucker Tidden, Ridgeuve, jr.

PLAYER TO WATCH: Julian Bowie, Pocatello

The 6-3, 180-pounder has been the catalyst of the Thunder’s revival over the last three years. Before his arrival, Pocatello hadn’t even been to state in 12 years. Bowie, who has more than 2,000 career points, has done everything - except get that elusive state title.


Quarterfinal picks:

Ridgevue over Twins Falls

Pocatello over Sandpoint

Hillcrest over Blackfoot

Bishop Kelly over Minico

Semifinal picks:

Pocatello over Ridgevue

Hillcrest over Bishop Kelly

Championship pick:

Pocatello 68, Hillcrest 66


sugar salem bonners ferry idaho idhsaa boys basketball state playoffs 2023 orr7


Games at Meridian HS, Meridian

No. 4 McCall-Donnelly (19-1) vs. No. 5 Teton (16-7), noon

No. 1 Snake River (21-2) vs. No. 8 Homedale (9-13), 2 p.m.

No. 2 Bonners Ferry (19-3) vs. No. 7 Kimberly (16-8), 5 p.m.

No. 3 Filer (17-5) vs. No. 6 Marsh Valley (15-10), 7 p.m.


FAVORITE: Snake River

The Panthers haven’t lost a game in 78 days. Their 18-game winning streak is tied with Madison and McCall-Donnelly for the longest active streak in the state. And most of those wins, haven’t been close. They’ve won all but five games by double digits with an average margin of victory of 23.5 points.

CONTENDER: Bonners Ferry

The Badgers are the reigning state runners up. They haven’t lost to a team within the 3A classification since. Their only losses are to Class 5A state qualifiers Coeur d’Alene and Lake City, which was only a four-point defeat. Bonners Ferry has won 13 straight games since then.

DARKHORSE: McCall-Donnelly

The Vandals are tied with Snake River and Madison for the longest active winning streak in the state at 18 games. Their only blemish is to 2A qualifier Ambrose back on Dec. 5, 2023. McCall-Donnelly boasts the classification’s top defense at 40.9 ppg. It was the state runner-up in 2021-22.



G Kaden Bullock, Marsh Valley, sr.

C Marcus Coombs, Snake River, jr.

G Luke Higginson, Snake River, sr.

G Sam Penny, McCall-Donnelly, jr.

G Asher Williams, Bonners Ferry, jr.

PLAYER TO WATCH: Marcus Coombs, Snake River

Coombs is an absolute force inside at 6-6 and near 200 pounds. He can take over a game at a moment's notice like he did in last week’s District V championship game with 12 points in the third quarter alone. He is averaging 18.6 points and 7.8 rebounds per game for a top-2 offense (67.9 ppg) and defense (46.6 ppg).


Quarterfinal picks:

McCall-Donnelly over Teton

Snake River over. Homedale

Bonners Ferry over Kimberly

Marsh Valley over Filer

Semifinal picks:

Snake River over McCall-Donnelly

Bonners Ferry over Marsh Valley

Championship pick:

Snake River 54, Bonners Ferry 50



Games at Capital HS, Boise

No. 4 North Fremont (17-4) vs. No. 5 West Side (15-9), noon

No. 1 Cole Valley Christian (23-2) vs. No. 8 St. Maries (15-7), 2 p.m.

No. 2 Ambrose (18-6) vs. No. 7 Firth (15-11), 5 p.m.

No. 3 Nampa Christian (15-7) vs. No. 6 Declo (15-7), 7 p.m.


FAVORITE: Cole Valley Christian

Yes, the Chargers were upset in the semifinals of their district tournament last week. But that could serve them well. They were the wire-to-wire No. 1-ranked team in the state media poll. Cole Valley Christian’s only other loss was to McCall-Donnelly. It has the top defense in 2A (42.6 ppg).


The Archers have been a playoff mainstay with this being their 10th appearance over the last 11 years. They’ve won two state titles (2016, 2020) during that timespan. Ambrose is responsible for McCall Donnelly’s only loss. Ambrose is the second-highest scoring team in 2A (63.7 ppg).

DARKHORSE: Nampa Christian

Are you noticing a pattern here? The Western Idaho Conference was by far and away the best league in the state this season. And the Trojans ended up being the district champion from there after a bit of a Cinderella run. But they haven’t been here in six years and haven’t won a game at state since 1997.



G Eli Kingery, Cole Valley Christian, sr.

G Ty Hughes, Ambrose, sr.

G Landon Mills, Nampa Christian, sr.

F Kasen Sorensen, Firth, soph.

G Ben Beglinger, Cole Valley Christina, sr.

PLAYER TO WATCH: Eli Kingery, Cole Valley Christian

He may only be 5-9, but that hasn’t stopped him from getting to the rim or crashing the boards. Kingery leads the team in both scoring (16 ppg) and rebounding (6.6 rpg). But this is nothing new. He’s been an all-conference selection the last two seasons and might be the Player of the Year this year.


Quarterfinal picks:

North Fremont over West Side

Cole Valley Christian over St. Maries

Ambrose over Firth

Nampa Christian over Declo

Semifinal picks:

Cole Valley Christian over North Fremont

Ambrose over Nampa Christian

Championship pick:

Cole Valley Christian 55, Ambrose 48


Kase Wynott, Lapwai basketball, class of 2024


Games at Vallivue HS, Caldwell

No. 4 Butte County (19-6) vs. No. 5 Oakley (17-6), noon

No. 1 Lapwai (22-2) vs. No. 8 Victory Charter (18-6), 2 p.m.

No. 2 Potlatch (18-5) vs. No. 7 Valley (17-6), 5 p.m.

No. 3 Lakeside (15-3) vs. No. 6 Liberty Charter (19-5), 7 p.m.



The Wildcats are looking for redemption after last year’s letdown. They had their bid for a third straight state championship and a 62-game winning streak snapped in last year’s title game. But Lapwai hasn’t lost to a 1A team since. It has an average margin of victory against them of more than 34 points.


The Knights were the team who stunned the Wildcats in last year’s overtime thriller. The teams haven’t met since. But like Lapwai, Lakeside, which only lost one player, hasn’t lost to a Class 1A team of any kind this season. It has the top offense in the state (81.4 ppg) and an average of victory of 36.3 ppg.


Last year’s consolation champions have played Lapwai tougher than any 1A team this season. But they’ve still lost all three of those encounters by an average of 12.3 points per game. However, Potlatch has faired well against everyone else. It owns wins over state qualifiers Kendrick, Deary and St. Maries.



G Tyson Charley, Lakeside, soph.

F Jaxon Vowels, Potlatch, sr.

G Brody Westergard, Butte County, sr.

G Kase Wynott, Lapwai, sr.

F Ahlius Yearout, Lapwai, sr.

PLAYER TO WATCH: Kase Wynott, Lapwai

The 6-foo-6 Utah State signee became Idaho’s all-time career leading scorer this season by breaking the record (2,589 points) of Kamiah’s Jared Mercer that had stood for 31 years. He’s a triple-double machine and is nearly averaging one for the season at 35.9 points, 14.3 rebounds and 9.5 assists per game.

Quarterfinal picks:

Butte County over Oakley

Lapwai over Victory Charter

Potlatch over Valley

Lakeside over Liberty Charter

Semifinal picks:

Lapwai over Butte County

Lakeside over Potlatch

Championship pick:

Lapwai 77, Lakeside 71



Games at Caldwell HS, Caldwell

No. 4 Rockland (19-4) vs. No. 5 Cascade (17-6), noon

No. 1 Camas County (20-3) vs. No. 8 Clark Fork (13-6), 2 p.m.

No. 2 Kendrick (19-5) vs. No. 7 Deary (13-8), 5 p.m.

No. 3 Garden Valley (21-2) vs. No. 6 Watersprings (19-5), 7 p.m.

G Brody Westergard, Butte County, sr.

FAVORITE: Kendrick

The Tigers are the defending state champions and haven’t lost to a team within the classification since. They haven’t tasted defeat since Jan. 8 with a current 12-game winning streak - the longest active one in the classification. This includes victories over three different state qualifying teams, including 2A’s St. Maries.

CONTENDER: Camas County

The Mushers were the wire-to-wire top-ranked team in the state. They also had the best offense in the classification at 67.5 points per game. But they did stub their toe briefly to a non-playoff team in Dietrich last week. Camas County also hasn’t won a championship in 40 years.


The Bulldogs have placed at state in each of the last three years, including winning it all in 2022. They’ve won their last 10 games and 16 of 17 overall. Rockland’s only loss within the classification was to top-seed Camas County. It owns top defense amongst all classifications at 36.7 ppg.


G Tacoma Kelly, Garden Valley, sr.

C Teague Matthews, Rockland, sr.

G Troy Smith, Camas County, sr.

G Tyler Thurston, Cascade, sr.

F Nathan Tweit, Kendrick, soph.

PLAYER TO WATCH: Teague Matthews, Rockland

The 6-foot-5, near-200-pounder is the reigning two-time Class 1A DII Player of the Year. He’ll likely three-peat with a double-double average of 15.3 points and 10.2 rebounds per game. Matthews has 12 double-doubles on the year alone. He signed a preferred walk-on with Utah for football last month.

Quarterfinal picks:

Rockland over Cascade

Camas County over Clark Fork

Kendrick over Deary

Garden Valley over Watersprings

Semifinal picks:

Rockland over Camas County

Kendrick over Garden Valley

Championship pick:

Rockland 58, Kendrick 56