Updated Wednesday, January 23, 2013 at 10:10 AM
BOTHELL — The noise from the Garfield locker room bounded out the closed wooden doors and into the hallway. Garfield coach Ed Haskins exited the room once, exhaling and sweating, but quickly excused himself for more.
It was a celebration worthy of the accomplishment: The second-ranked Garfield Bulldogs put together a nearly flawless fourth quarter to knock off No. 1 Bothell 86-71 Tuesday night in a thrilling KingCo 4A boys basketball game.
"This one is huge," Garfield senior Trevaunté Williams said. "It's not just league-wise, it's not just in the books. It was two of the powerhouses. If we want to win a championship, this was an audition."
Indeed, Bothell (15-2, 10-1 league) and Garfield (15-1, 11-0) are both contenders for the Class 4A state title, and looked the part.
Bothell's Zach LaVine and Perrion Callandret put on a show offensively. Callandret scored a season-high 31 points, including 24 before halftime, and had two SportsCenter-worthy dunks. LaVine scored 35, one more than he had Monday in a loss to Rainier Beach.
The Bulldogs were led, as usual, by Williams, who controlled the paint with 23 points, and Tucker Haymond, who put a slow start behind him.
Haymond scored just two points through three quarters and battled foul trouble. But when Callandret's two free throws cut Garfield's lead to 63-62 with 6:25 left, Haymond responded with seven straight points. He finished with 13.
"We needed him," Williams said. "He needed to wake up. He's my guy. He wasn't going to go out without his name coming up."
In the end, the difference may have been depth. Bothell received only five points from players not named Callandret or LaVine and, when foul trouble hit, the Cougars struggled, particularly without injured guard Kellen Webster.
Garfield, on the other hand, was just fine when Haymond and Williams had to sit with four fouls — largely because of sophomore Vincenzo Reiser's 21 points and six rebounds.
"He's starting to figure it out," said Haskins, who got his 100th victory. "He's kind of our secret weapon, but maybe not after tonight."
Garfield senior Jalen McGruder didn't play in the first half, but flipped the momentum in the third quarter with two three-pointers. His second, an off-balance shot at the buzzer, gave Garfield a 61-57 lead heading into the fourth.
"Knockdown," Haskins said. "We've called him that all year. He just makes big shots."
Bothell led 42-39 at halftime thanks to a ruthless offensive performance from Callandret. But the second half, particularly the fourth quarter, belonged to Garfield.
And here's the best part: There's a good chance the two will meet again.
"We're going to see them again," said Haskins, who described Bothell as ridiculously good. "No question about it in my mind."
ERIKA SCHULTZ / THE SEATTLE TIMES
Aqeel Williams (23) and Garfield teammates celebrate their victory over top-ranked Bothell. It likely jumps the Bulldogs to No. 1 in the Class 4A rankings next week.