Desert Hills Lady Thunder go 4-0 at Tarkanian Classic tournament

Desert Hills players pose with trophy after winning the Tarkanian Classic tournament's Ruby division, Las Vegas, Nevada, Dec. 21, 2019 | Photo courtesy of Greg Jacobsen, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — The Desert Hills High School girls basketball team is off to an 8-0 start, including winning all four of its games at the Jerry Tarkanian Classic invitational tournament in Las Vegas last week.

The Lady Thunder started off the four-day tourney with a 48-40 victory over Pasadena, California on Wednesday.

Desert Hills played that first game without starter Julia Jacobsen, who was sick.

“We had a tough game and really had to grind it out,” DHHS head coach Ron Denos told St. George News.

The next night, the Lady Thunder cruised to an easy 53-32 win over Arbor View, Nevada.

“We shot well, 50% for the night, and everyone got to play,” Denos said.

Friday’s opponent was George Washington High from Denver, Colorado, with the Lady Thunder pulling away for a 53-41 victory.

“They were really quick and talented,” Denos said of the Patriots. “Our defense frustrated them and we played well together.”

Desert Hills players pose with their trophy after winning the Tarkanian Classic tournament’s Ruby division, Las Vegas, Nevada, Dec. 21, 2019 | Photo courtesy of Greg Jacobsen, St. George News

Saturday’s matchup put Desert Hills against a Utah team, the American Fork Lady Cavemen. The Thunder led by just two points at halftime, 21-19, but pulled away in the second half to win the game 40-34 and capture the tournament’s Ruby division championship.

Kamryn Bliss of Desert Hills, who led all scorers with 14 points in Saturday’s game, was named the MVP of the tournament, while teammate Syd Peisley was named to the all-tournament team.

Denos also credited several other Desert Hills players for their key contributions to the team’s victories, including Jacobsen, Sa’de Turlington, Shailee Bundy and Maggie Westhoff.

“It was a great tournament because we saw all different types of styles to help us through region,” Denos added. “We know region will be real tough and this will really help us. Being away from home will also help for the postseason.”

Desert Hills’ next scheduled game is a Region 9 contest at Hurricane on Jan. 3.

Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2019, all rights reserved.

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