Seattle Prep geared up for a title run on the hardwood

This story originally appeared in the Holiday issue of ESPNHS magazine’s Washington edition.

Sure, it’s 2011. But at Seattle Prep, it’s starting to feel like ‘06 again.

That year, the Panthers rode the talents of low-post stud Spencer Hawes and a bevy of perimeter scorers to claim the Class 4A trophy.

While no one will confuse current power forward Mitch Brewe with Hawes, defenders haven’t been able to contain the senior on the block, and the talent of his teammates may rival that of the ‘06 squad. That combination has made the Panthers (No. 46 in the POWERADE FAB 50) a favorite to capture this year’s state crown.

“I feel like that team has shown us how much hard work it takes to win a state championship,” says Brewe, a UC Santa Barbara commit. “They never took a day off, and that’s a good example for the squad we have this year.“

Brewe averaged 22 points and 10 rebounds per game last winter to propel Prep to the Class 3A state tournament, where the Panthers were knocked out by league rival O’Dea.

This year, teams will double Brewe at their own peril.

Junior D.J. Fenner returns after a year in Washington, D.C., while seniors Michael Phillips and Jackson Clough and sophomore Josh Martin add scoring punch from the perimeter. Fenner provides the Panthers with a multi-faceted scorer who is among the league’s toughest defenders. Clough tallied 13 points a game last winter and has one of the prettiest strokes in the state. Phillips is a hard-nosed defender and his leadership is unmatched, while Martin is a voracious rebounder.

“We have the talent to make people decide who they’re going to defend,” says coach Michael Kelley. “If we’re willing to defend and share the ball, good things will happen.”

David Auguste is an associate editor for ESPNHS and ESPNHIGHSCHOOL.com. Follow him on Twitter @ESPNHSAuguste or email him at David.Auguste@espn.com.