CEDAR CITY — Tournament co-host Cedar High School saw its boys and girls varsity basketball teams both finish 3-0 at the Steve Hodson Cancer Classic, which wrapped up Wednesday. Across town at Canyon View High, the home team Lady Falcons outlasted Tooele in triple overtime for their second straight win.
Also going undefeated all three days of the invitational tournament were the Grand County boys and the Grantsville girls. The majority of the 16 schools at the tournament won at least one varsity game.
The tournament also marked the final preseason test for Region 9 teams before their scheduled start of in-conference competition next week. Here’s a recap of selected games on Wednesday:
Stansbury 31, Dixie 30
The Dixie Flyers thwarted their own comeback attempt late, sending Stansbury to the line for a pair of free-throws with less than five seconds on the clock in a 30-30 tie.
The Flyers had trailed by eight with four and a half minutes to play, 28-20. After playing close for the first seven eighths of the game, the Stallions spread out the game’s largest lead. Dixie immediately began fighting back, as Katie Mills drained a 3-pointer from the point on the next possession. Dixie then turned the ball over on their next two drives, maybe trying to do too much and struggling with some miscommunication.
In the meantime, the Flyers played solid defense, giving the Stallions only a look from deep in the left corner, generating and converting a rebound. On the next turn on defense, Addy Shaffer picked the pocket of a Stansbury player outside the arc, taking it all the way down for the easy layup and to pull the Flyers within a single possession once again. Dixie applied tough pressure outside again, forcing a bad pass out of bounds near midcourt. On the ensuing possession, a wide open Emily Tauillili swished a three from the right wing, knotting the game at 28 apiece.
Soon thereafter, Stansbury regained the lead after a loose ball in the paint caused chaos, setting the Stallions up for an easy layup from the rubble. A give-and-go by Shaffer from Kealah Faumuina set up a layup and a foul. However, Shaffer missed the go-ahead free throw, keeping the game tied at 30-30 with just under 10 seconds on the clock. An overeager Shaffer then fouled Stansbury’s Epa Tia as she was trying to exit the defensive end, sending Tia to the line for a pair of free throws, thanks to the double-bonus awarded after the 10th foul. After missing the first shot, Tia sank the game-winner with 4.7 seconds left. Dixie was unable to get off a final shot as time expired.
“Never like to lose, but considering that today was only the third time all of our varsity players have been together this season, we were able to put ourselves in a situation where we had a chance to win,” said Dixie head coach Ryan Forsey. “At this point, that’s all I can ask for.”
“We’ve got a long ways to go, but I’m proud of how hard we played and fought to the end,” Forsey added.
Dixie drops to 1-4 to complete its preseason. The Flyers will host Hurricane on Tuesday to begin Region 9 play.
Grantsville 43, Hurricane 40
Hurricane nearly battled back from a nine-point halftime deficit, coming up short in their bid to beat Grantsville as they missed a last-second attempt to tie the game.
The Tigers shot only 26% from the field for the game, but got 12 points from Haley Chesley, who went 4-for-5 from the line. Seven Tigers recorded steals, with four of them tallying multiples for a team total of 11. Madi Staples recorded nine rebounds, five of which came off the defensive backboard.
Hurricane scored only six points on three field goals in the second quarter, falling behind the Cowboys, 25-16. Although the Tigers outscored Grantsville 24-18 in the second half, it wasn’t enough to pull off the comeback.
The Tigers trailed by seven points with 2:45 to play but managed to hold Grantsville scoreless over the next minute and a half to pull even . Staples drew a reaching foul and landed both of her free throws to knot the game 40-40. On the ensuing possession, Grantsville drew a foul of their own and pulled out to a one-point lead with just over a minute left.
On their next possession, the Tigers shot it off of the side of the backboard, putting the ball in Cowboy hands. After taking the clock-stopping foul, Grantsville made two more free throws to take a three-point lead with just five seconds to play. The final deep 3-point attempt by Sadie Gilberg banged off the rim at the buzzer.
The Tigers fell to 2-5 on the preseason. They’ll travel to Dixie on Tuesday to start Region 9 competition.
Canyon View 45, Tooele 41 (3 OT)
The Canyon View Falcons and the Tooele Buffaloes took an extra three periods to determine a winner.
The game started slow, with each team scoring just a single basket in the opening period, which ended with Tooele ahead 3-2.
The second period wasn’t much of an improvement offensively, as Tooele took an 11-9 lead at halftime.
The game stayed close throughout much of the second half, and by the end of regulation everything was knotted up at 30-30.
Each team scored four points in the first four-minute overtime period. The Falcons took a 34-32 lead in the first OT with a minute left and victory in reach after senior guard Addison Newman drove down the left lane for a layup. They defended their end on the next possession, but gave up a steal and a fast-break layup for Tooele to tie it up again with 15 seconds left.
Canyon View led again late in the second overtime, 38-37, before fouling a Tooele player and watching her sink both free throws to take the lead. After a pair of missed layups, Harlee Nicoll finally found the net to regain the lead. She then hit a free throw to extend the lead to two points with 10 seconds left. Again, with victory just seconds away, Tooele recovered and Aysha Lewis sank a clutch jumper just inside the arc as the buzzer sounded to tie the game once again, 41-41.
Canyon View held the Buffaloes scoreless in the third overtime and got two more free throws from Nicoll and two from Newman to seal the deal.
Newman finished with 19 points, while Nicoll added 12, including seven in the overtime periods.
“That’s a pretty good time to turn it on,” said Canyon View head coach Jaycee Barnhurst. She also cited the clutch play of reserve guard Payton Lister, who scored two key baskets late in the fourth quarter and sank 4-of-4 free throws during overtime play.
The Buffaloes were led by Lewis, who scored 18 points, including a clutch 3-pointer in the fourth period and six points in the overtimes. Madi Baker and Breanna Beer each hit key free throws in the extra sessions to keep the Buffaloes in the game.
“We just told the kids, it’s been a one point game all night long,” Barnhurst said of her speech to her players as regulation time ended. “You know, get back in it, get ahead and give yourself a shot. I thought they did that tonight.
“It was fun,” she added. “Of course, it’s frustrating when you miss a shot or you give up a defensive possession, but in the end we did enough, so that was fun.”
Canyon View finishes its preseason 3-5 overall, with a two-game winning streak. The Falcons travel to Desert Hills Tuesday to begin their region schedule.
Cedar 49, Juab 29
The Cedar Reds cruised to an easy win, jumping out early and never looking back against the Juab Wasps at home. The Reds took 17 of the game’s first 21 points to close out the first quarter ahead 18-4 and things didn’t get better for Juab from there. It took until deep into the third quarter for Juab to finally break into double digits, and Cedar already had scored 34 points by then.
The Wasps scored fairly evenly with the Reds in the second half, particularly the fourth quarter once Cedar had pumped the brakes and allowed their younger reserve players to play more minutes.
In the end, Abby Davis led Cedar with 15 points, Braylee Peterson had 12 and McKell Kearns scored 11.
Cedar finishes its preseason schedule at 3-4, with the Reds having won three straight after losing their first four. They’ll next travel to play Snow Canyon to open their Region 9 slate on Tuesday.
Stansbury 51, Hurricane 48
The Hurricane Tigers came within just inches of hitting a game-tying 3-pointer at the buzzer, just bouncing it off the back rim to fall to the Stansbury Stallions 51-48 at Canyon View.
A slow start for both teams led to only 11 points in the first quarter and a one-point Stansbury lead, 6-5. It would have been 6-2 Stallions at the quarter had it not been for a buzzer-beater 3-pointer by Nathan Parker, one of his three on the day. By halftime, Stansbury had doubled its lead to two points, 19-17.
Although Hurricane never led, the Tigers only got as far behind as five points, which came late in the third quarter. They were outscored in each of the first three quarters, but at most by two points. They won the fourth quarter 19-18, but it wasn’t enough to close the gap.
Jack Reeve had 14 points to lead Hurricane, while Parker added nine.
The Tigers, who wrapped up the preseason at 1-7, will open Region 9 play hosting Dixie on Jan. 6.
Cedar 75, Juab 60
Cedar jumped out to a 19-10 lead in the first quarter and maintained a double-digit lead over the Juab Wasps the rest of the game.
Juab, which trailed 34-18 at halftime, actually outscored Cedar in the second half, but weren’t able to significantly chip away at the Reds’ big lead.
Treyton Tebbs led the Reds in scoring with 23 points, while fellow guard Gaige Savage added 12 and Aaron Munson contributed 11.
Cedar assistant coach Tyler Monks noted that the team was able to win all three of its games in the absence of head coach Mark Esplin, who’s expected to return tomorrow, as well as starting guard Zab Santana.
“The kids have stepped up,” Monks said. “We also didn’t have Gaige for the first two games this week, and so we’re starting kids who usually are role players off the bench but they stepped up and filled the shoes and we played well.
“Obviously, at the back end of three (games) you’re going to be tired. Your legs are gone,” he added. “We missed a few shots that usually go for us. But we locked in defensively.”
Monks said multiple Cedar players got into foul trouble early in the game, including Dallin Grant, Luke Armstrong and Jaron Garrett.
“We played through a lot of stuff tonight. And if you can win those games, you feel like you’re in a good spot,” he added.
Cedar, which improved to 5-2 in preseason play with the win, will open its Region 9 schedule when it hosts Snow Canyon on Jan. 6.
South Sevier 63, Canyon View 44
A catastrophic second quarter set the Falcons back beyond the point of no return. Canyon View scored only seven points on two field goals while watching the Rams pile on 17.
The Falcons held on early, clinging to a 20-15 deficit by the first horn. They didn’t get much by way of defense, but found some chances on the inside and a pair of 3-pointers before the collapse in the second quarter.
Things didn’t get much better in the third quarter, as the Falcons waited three minutes to get their first basket. Tray Allred took a pass cutting under the basket, pivoted in the opposite direction of his momentum and sank the layup. The Rams ran to a 49-31 lead by the end of the third quarter.
Tray Allred led the Falcons with 12 points and was their only player to score in every quarter. Tyler Maine started quick with six points in the first quarter and went 4-for-4 from the free-throw line but was kept off the score sheet in the second half. Cole Farrow hit two of the team’s 3-pointers from the perimeter.
“South Sevier did a good job getting the right shots form the right guys at the right places, and they were able to hit a high percentage of their threes,” said Canyon View head coach Rob Potter. “We struggle at times to get the right shots and when we get them, we just can’t make them. That’s kind of been the story of our season so far.”
Canyon View falls to 1-7, concluding their preseason. They host the undefeated Desert Hills Thunder on Jan. 6.
Cedar City News reporter JEFF RICHARDS contributed to the Hodson Classic tournament coverage.
Desert Hills 70, Springville 58
Meanwhile, down in St. George, there was one other boys basketball game played Wednesday night involving a Region 9 school, as the undefeated Desert Hills Thunder hosted the Springville Red Devils in a non-region matchup.
An early scoring barrage combined with high caliber defense gave Desert Hills a comfortable early lead that would prove pivotal in their win. The Thunder outscored the Red Devils by 12 points in the first quarter, which would prove pivotal as the teams matched each other in scoring in the final 32 minutes.
Desert Hills scored consistently all game, bottoming out at 12 points in a quarter. The Red Devils were all or nothing, scoring 23 points in both the second and fourth but only eight in the first and four in the third.
Keegan Munson went a perfect 9-for-9 from the field and 3-for-3 from the free-throw line to score 22 points. The big man landed a 3-pointer in the second quarter and is a perfect 3-for-3 from beyond the arc this season. He also had four boards.
Mason Landdeck scored a game-high 23 points including a season-high five 3-pointers. His five defensive rebounds led the Thunder and tied with Justin Judkins for the most overall boards on the team.
Also for the Thunder, Reggie Newby tallied nine assists and three steals, both leading the team.
Desert Hills finishes the preseason unbeaten at 8-0. The Thunder will travel to Canyon View to take on the Falcons on Jan. 6.
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