No. 1 Panthers advance despite frantic Uintah comeback

Pine View vs. Uintah, 3A State Basketball Tournament, Salt Lake City, Utah, Feb. 26, 2015 | Photo by Robert Hoppie, ASPpix.com, St. George News

WEST VALLEY CITY – Pine View built a 22-point lead, then held on for all it was worth and eventually emerged with a 55-48 win over Uintah in the quarterfinal round of the 3A Boys State Basketball Tournament here at the Maverik Center.

Pine-view-smuintahGarrett Bowker, returning from a one-game suspension, scored 20 points and Chaz Peterson added 17 as Pine View was hot in the first half. The Panthers built the lead to 33-16 at intermission.

“We hit shots, played defense and got a few calls,” PV coach Darrell Larsen said. “We didn’t do that in the second half.”

Pine View actually started the second half well, using the first three-plus minutes to go on a 7-2 run and gain its biggest lead of the day at 40-18.

Chaz Petersen drives into the Uintah defense, Pine View vs. Uintah, 3A State Basketball Tournament, Salt Lake City, Utah, Feb. 26, 2015 | Photo by Robert Hoppie, ASPpix.com, St. George News
Chaz Petersen drives into the Uintah defense, Pine View vs. Uintah, 3A State Basketball Tournament, Salt Lake City, Utah, Feb. 26, 2015 | Photo by Robert Hoppie, ASPpix.com, St. George News

That’s when the furious rally began. Uintah started hitting shots and forcing turnovers and by the end of the third, the Utes had cut it to 42-28. Peterson temporarily stopped the bleeding with a free throw to start the fourth quarter and make it 43-28.

Using a full-court press and very physical defense, Uintah surged once again, scoring 10 straight to make it 43-38 with 4:05 left in the game (or what probably seemed like an eternity to the Panthers).

“The game got pretty rough and physical,” Peterson said. “We just had to weather the storm. I’m so glad we’re playing tomorrow. I want to play it right now.”

The rest of the game was a mix of Pine View turnovers and Panther march to the free throw line. PV would make just one field goal in the fourth quarter, while shooting 18 free throws, making 11.

Pine View had 20 turnovers in the game, 13 of them in the second half.

Uintah never did take the lead, although the Utes had it down to 50-47 with 1:08 to play after a Jordan Cushing free throw. Uintah also got a stop, but missed a couple of shots at the offensive end and Bowker rebounded and hit a freebie to make it 51-47.

A Utes free throw with 31 seconds to go again made it a three-point game at 51-48. But Bowker made 3 of 4 free throws in the closing seconds to ice the game and Uintah couldn’t get a 3-pointer to fall.

Pine View was playing without starter Cody Ruesch, who broke his ankle in practice earlier this week. Center Kody Wilstead also didn’t play much. He fouled out after spending just 13 of 32 minutes on the floor. He had seven points and seven blocked shots.

Pine View advances to the state semifinals Friday night. The Panthers will play Richfield at 5:50 p.m. The Wildcats beat Ben Lomond 49-36.

Stats: PV 55, Uintah 48

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