Region 9 girls basketball: Desert Hills outlasts Pine View in OT; Cedar, Hurricane, Dixie also win

ST. GEORGE — Thursday night’s Region 9 girls basketball action featured two overtime nailbiters and two second-half comebacks. Here’s a recap of the action:

Desert Hills 68, Pine View 65 (OT)

The Thunder needed an extra four minutes, but they defended their home court against the No. 1 team in the state.

After entering halftime with a 36-19 lead, Desert Hills slowly watched the gap tighten over the rest of the game. Pine View closed to within six points by the third buzzer before catching up on a 3-pointer by Mady Jensen in the right corner with 59 seconds left in the game. Appropriately, it knotted the score at 59-59. The score held there until overtime.

“It was a tale of two halves,” Desert Hills head coach Ron Denos said. “I’m just afraid it’s going be like this every game with them. They’re a very good team, and we match up well with each other. It just depends on who plays the best that night.”

Jensen’s 3-pointer marked the first time the Panthers had not trailed on the scoreboard since the 2:30 mark in the first quarter, when they had led 6-5. The Thunder went on a 12-4 over the remaining time in the first frame and held the lead until Jensen’s bucket.

Pine View at Desert Hills, St. George, Utah, Jan. 14, 2021 | Photo by Rich Allen, St. George News

In overtime, Enid Vaifanua drained a three-ball from the point 30 seconds in to give Desert Hills the edge. Alex Olson landed a pair of free throws to bring the Panthers back within one before Desert Hills’ Shailee Bundy responded with a drive to the post and a layup, drawing a foul in the process but missing the and-one. Pine View’s Averi Papa converted from just outside the key on the ensuing possession, and once again the teams were separated by a single point.

Vaifanua scored the next four points, first on a drive down low then on an uncontested layup on a fast break from a turnover. Olson drove just inside the free-throw line and brought Pine View again within a single possession before Olson’s deep 3-ball shot in an attempt to tie the game with under 10 seconds banged off the rim. Bundy cleaned up the rebound and cleared the zone, securing the win for Desert Hills.

The bigs led the way for both teams. Bundy scored 18, and Julia Jacobsen scored 19 for Desert Hills, while Papa had a game-leading 27 points for Pine View, on 13 field goals.

“Out of the state, I think we have both have the best post players in 4A,” Denos said.

Vaifanua also reached double digits for Desert Hills with seven of her 12 points coming during the overtime period. Olson scored 10 for Pine View.

The Panthers suffered their first loss of the year in heartbreaking fashion. They fall to 10-1 overall and 3-1 in Region 9 and host Cedar on Tuesday.

The Thunder remain undefeated in Region 9 through four games and improve to 8-2 overall. Desert Hills hosts Hurricane next.

Cedar 44, Canyon View 41 (OT)

At Cedar High, the Reds outlasted in-town rival Canyon View in overtime, 44-41.

Cedar jumped out to an 8-1 lead at the start of the game and led 11-3 at the end of the first quarter. However, Cedar’s top scorer Abby Davis injured her right thumb near the end of the quarter and did not return to action.

Canyon View at Cedar, Cedar City, Utah, Jan. 14, 2021 | Photo by Jeff Richards, St. George News / Cedar City News

Canyon View outscored the Reds 10-6 during the second quarter and trailed by just four points at halftime.

With 2:40 left in the third, Cedar still led by four, 25-21, but the Falcons rallied to tie the score 25-25 with one minute left in the period.

Cedar then scored the last four points of the third quarter and also made two quick baskets at the start of the fourth to take a 33-25 lead with 7:00 left in regulation.

The Falcons held Cedar to just two more points during the remainder of the fourth quarter as they slowly chipped away at the Reds’ lead. Canyon View managed to tie the game 35-35 with just over two minutes left in regulation.

Neither team scored in that final two minutes, however, as Canyon View missed a pair of free throws with 55 seconds left, after which Cedar stalled down for one last shot but failed to get a shot off.

In overtime, the Reds took the lead first, but Canyon View later tied it again, 39-39. Cedar’s Jacey Messer swished a pair of free throws with 2:22 left to give the Reds a 41-39 lead, and Cedar stayed ahead from that point on.

Canyon View drove inside from the baseline with 33 seconds left and trailing by three, but the Falcons were whistled for an offensive foul. On Cedar’s ensuing possession, junior guard Braylee Peterson swished two free throws to ice the game by giving Cedar a five-point lead with 22 seconds left.

“We had players in situations which they’d never been in before,” said Cedar head coach Corry Nielsen. “Players who had never been in that kind of intense region game, but they battled and hung in there and found a way to win.”

Nielsen said he counted at least eight uncontested layups that his team missed during the contest.

“That’s mostly nerves, and next time during that situation, they’ll probably all go in,” he said, noting that the Reds did convert 5-of-6 free-throw attempts during the overtime period, after missing a total of six foul shots during regulation play. 

“I tell my players, unguarded layups and foul shots, those are the shots that determine games,” he added.

Peterson led Cedar in scoring with 16 points, while Grace Morales and Haylee Campbell each added eight and Messer contributed seven. Canyon View was led by Harlee Nicoll’s 17 points, with Addison Newman adding 12.

Cedar, which improved to 6-5 overall, 3-1 in region play, will travel to face Pine View next Tuesday. Canyon View, which dropped to 0-4, 3-9 in region, plays at Crimson Cliffs on Tuesday.

— written by Jeff Richards

Hurricane 51, Snow Canyon 41

At Hurricane, the Tigers trailed Snow Canyon 25-19 at halftime, but Hurricane outscored the Warriors 18-5 during the third quarter to build the lead that would guide them to a win.

Madison Staples and Haley Chesley each scored seven points and Britin Behrmann had four in the decisive third frame, while the Tigers held the Warriors to just five points in the quarter.

“I am so proud of their mentality of staying in this game and for Britin and Madison stepping up in their scoring game,” Hurricane head coach Pepper Reddish said. “The third quarter was exactly what we talked about at halftime. They adjusted to their shooters on defense and had better shooting on offense.”

Chesley finished with 21 points to lead the game. Staples had 15 points and five rebounds. Behrmann collected 10 boards off the glass.

Natalie Olson led Snow Canyon with 17 points and went 7-for-10 from the free-throw line.

With their third straight victory, Hurricane improves to 3-1 in Region 9 and 5-6 overall. The Tigers will get their biggest test yet on Tuesday, traveling to Desert Hills.

Snow Canyon falls to 1-9 and 0-4 in league play. The Warriors host Dixie next Tuesday.

Dixie 42, Crimson Cliffs 34

The Flyers scored 28 points in the second half after trailing by seven at the midway point to secure the home victory over the Mustangs.

Crimson Cliffs at Dixie, St. George, Utah, Jan. 14, 2021 | Photo by Dave Larson, St. George News

Dixie scored 14 points in both of the last two quarters, matching their scoring from the entire first half in each.

“Really happy for our team tonight, especially after the disappointing first half we had,” Dixie head coach Ryan Forsey said. “It took some toughness and grit to come out in the second half and battle back and take the lead and hold onto it against a much improved Crimson team.”

Freshman center Kealah Faumuina led the way for Dixie, scoring 16 points, including nine in the second half. Addy Shaffer scored 13, with nine of hers also coming in the latter two quarters.

Sophomore Riann Gines scored 14 to lead Crimson Cliffs. Freshman Ashtin Hansen recorded 10 points, including both of the Mustangs’ 3-pointers.

The Flyers improve to 5-5 and 3-1 in Region 9. They’ll travel to Snow Canyon on Tuesday.

Crimson Cliffs drops to 2-8 overall and 2-2 in league. The Mustangs host the Falcons of Canyon View next Tuesday.

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Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2021, all rights reserved.

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