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Friday, March 10, 2006 - Page updated at 02:25 PM

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4A boys notebook: Franklin's Daisy glad for 2nd chance

Special to The Seattle Times

TACOMA — Jordan Daisy is back at the Tacoma Dome, and the Franklin senior is savoring every moment of his final trip to state.

After going to state as a freshman and sophomore, Daisy and the Quakers missed the tournament last year. Then, in October, he received devastating news that nearly ended his basketball season before it started.

At a routine checkup, doctors discovered an enlarged heart, which was causing high blood pressure. Daisy thought his playing days were over.

He began taking medication to control his blood pressure, and by late December, doctors cleared Daisy to join the team.

"It's a wonderful feeling being back out here," said Daisy, who scored 11 points in Franklin's 63-54 quarterfinal win over Ferris. "I thought I was done when I was diagnosed with that condition, but by the grace of God, I got to come back."

Daisy has played his way back into shape and, according to coach Jason Kerr, has only returned to form in the past three weeks.

"It's a huge bonus," said Kerr of having Daisy back. "When it first came down, to be honest, I didn't know if we'd get him back or not, and still to this day I'm scared to have him back. You almost start looking out on the floor like it's one of your own kids."

Trainers check Daisy's blood pressure before, during and after games.

"It's a lot of monitoring," Kerr said. "I know more about his heart than I do my own."

On the court, Daisy is peaking at just the right time, having scored in double figures in seven of his team's last eight games.

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Added Kerr: "The diagnosis is true. He has a big heart. He's battling through everything."

Names the same

Toussaint Tyler of Kentwood is a basketball player with football genes.

If the name sounds familiar, it's because the 6-foot-1 guard is the son of the former Washington Huskies running back of the same name.

The elder Tyler, from Oceanside, Calif., played in purple and gold from 1977 to 1980 and is No. 11 on the school's career rushing list with 2,015 yards. He now works as a juvenile-detention officer for King County.

The younger Tyler is a senior and coach Dean Montzingo calls him "our heart and soul — our leader."

Tyler averages a team-high 17 points and scored 16 in Thursday's 71-51 consolation-bracket win over Evergreen of Vancouver that kept the season alive for the Conquerors (22-5).

He is a two-year starter and was sixth man as a sophomore on the Kentwood team that won the state title. His college plans are undecided but he could be playing at a community college next season.

Tyler turned out for football twice at Kentwood — as a sophomore when he played running back and strong safety and last fall as a senior, when he played strong safety and receiver. He suffered an ankle injury as a sophomore and didn't finish the season. Last fall, he left the team during the season to get ready for basketball, which is his first love.

"Basketball is non-stop — you just keep going and going," he said. "It's not like baseball where you sit around a lot and in football you come back to a huddle."

Notes

• Three Inglemoor musicians warmed up by playing the old standard "In the Mood" in a men's room at the Tacoma Dome. Ten girls from Lake Stevens were intrigued by the music and stood outside then clapped when Skylar Boorman, David Haider and Brennan Carter finished the song.

• Veteran broadcaster Bob Robertson is calling the action involving boys and girls Spokane schools. Like most reporters, he was impressed with 6-8 Gig Harbor sophomore Clarence Trent in the opening round.

Noting how Trent is one of two 6-8 players on a team with two 6-5 starters, Tacoma-area resident Robertson said, "I'm thinking of inviting the team over to paint my ceilings."

• This is the first state trip for Southridge, which has prompted some fans to ask, "How long has the Kennewick school been open?" Answer: It opened with freshmen in the fall of 1995 and graduated its first class in 1999.

Seattle Times correspondent John Boyle contributed to this notebook.

Copyright © 2006 The Seattle Times Company

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