CEDAR CITY — Height doesn’t always tell the tell in a basketball game, but it sure did Tuesday night at Canyon View High School.
Pine View started four of five players listed over six-feet tall and the Falcons couldn’t match the length of the Panthers, who went on to win 56-49.
Pine View center Cody Ruesch scored 13 points and was tasked with the job of guarding CV’s quick shooting guard, Brantzen Blackner, for a majority of the night.
“We knew we were going to outsize them,” Ruesch said. “We knew we had to move the ball around and get it into the post to score a lot easier. (We also needed) to play help defense. We knew they were going to be a lot smaller than us, so we forced it inside.”
PV head coach Darrell Larsen said he knew it would be a battle against the Falcons, even with size on his side.
“It’s always a tough, grinding game up here,” he said. “I really felt, defensively, we did some really good things. We got better tonight. That’s a pretty dang good ball team, especially at home. We did a pretty good job of containing two pretty good players. We did some good things, we’ve gotta clean it up, though. We had 14 turnovers, and (the turnovers) really led to layups for them. If we could control that, we could be pretty good defensively.”
The Panthers were happy with the win and improving their record to 4-1 on the season. PV’s Kade Moore scored 16 points to lead all scorers, including three 3-pointers that helped get the lead and extend the lead throughout the game.
“I just came out with confidence and felt good,” Moore said. “We just played our hardest and moved the ball around. We took the right shots and didn’t force it up on the first shot. There were some times that we forced it too fast and they got the steal. We’re getting better though.”
Larsen said his team needs to learn how to finish games because CV cut into the lead late due to turnovers and some missed free throws.
“We’re a young team with not much varsity experience,” Larsen said. “We just need to learn how to finish ball games. They know how to win, but just finishing the right way because it was ugly. We always talk about simplistic perfection. Yeah, we’re not going to be perfect, but the simplistic perfection of basketball is all we’re trying to do.”
Ruesch finished with 13 points and Brandon Yates added 10 more in the win.
The game between the Panthers and Falcons had plenty of whistles, including two technical fouls called late in the fourth quarter.
One of CV’s last and best chances to make a comeback came when the Panthers led by 10 points when Ruesch picked up a foul, which turned quickly into a technical foul when he expressed his disapproval. Canyon View had four chances at the line and the ball back to cut into the lead, but only came away with two points.
Canyon View was led by Cord Johnson with 11 points. Brantzen Blackner added 10 more, while Xavier Stoker and Lorenzo Camba finished with nine points each.
Pine View now heads off to play in the NGS Tournament in Page, Ariz., this Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Canyon View plays at Cedar High School in a crosstown rivalry Friday, Dec. 18, at 7 p.m.
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