GC-Preston photo

Green Canyon’s Maren McKenna scores against Preston last Saturday in North Logan.

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With Region 11 play beginning this week, a handful of teams from the valley were in action Saturday before turning their full attention to league opponents.

In girls basketball action, two valley teams tangled in North Logan. Green Canyon hosted a very good Preston team and was able to outscore the visitors in every quarter.

The Wolves notched their fourth win in a row and halted a five-game winning streak by the Lady Indians in the process, 53-43. Preston had won at Marsh Valley on Friday night, 53-28, and then had to travel home and get up early to face the Wolves Saturday morning. While it wasn’t ideal, Preston made no excuses for the loss.

For Green Canyon (8-2), it gives them a boost before hosting Ridgeline this Thursday in its region opener.

“The girls played team ball on both ends, which allowed us to come away with a good, solid win,” Wolves head coach Alexis Bird said. “It’s always good to have a win before region.”

Green Canyon held a 12-11 lead after the first quarter and was up 26-22 at halftime. It continued to be a close affair the rest of the way. The Wolves took a 37-31 lead into the final quarter.

“It was a fun and competitive game,” Bird said. “Preston is a great team, and it was great to see how the girls reacted. Preston is really good.”

The Indians (13-4) got great efforts from Kylie Larsen and Hailey Meek. That duo scored 18 points each to lead all scorers in the game. Larsen was 7 of 9 from the field, while the rest of the Preston team went a combined 9 of 38. Larsen also had six rebounds and blocked three shots. Meek made a trio of 3-pointers, while also dishing out two assists and coming up with three steals.

The Wolves were much more balanced in the scoring department. Maren McKenna led the way with 12 points and seven rebounds, while Landree Spackman had 10 points, five rebounds, four steals and two assists. Jayden Beach added 10 points and five rebounds, while McKenna Crane came up with three steals.

Both teams missed eight free throws for the game. However, Green Canyon attempted seven more, going 14 of 22.

OTHER GIRLS GAMES

Two other valley teams were in action Saturday as Logan picked up a home win against Layton Christian Academy, 63-42, and Ridgeline fell at home to a really good team from Idaho in Sugar-Salem, 58-41.

The Grizzlies (6-3) also won every quarter like the Wolves did, but it wasn’t easy early on. Logan trailed by seven in the first quarter before rallying to take a 17-15 lead and took a 31-26 advantage into the break. The hosts broke the game open in the fourth by outscoring the Eagles (6-2) by 10 points.

“We were able to make some adjustment on defense and fight our way back ending the first quarter up by two,” Grizzly head coach Morganne Madsen said. “We were able to keep our lead the whole game through strong defense and rebounding. The girls shared the ball well.”

Logan finished with 16 assists on 22 made field goals.

Amber Kartchner led the Grizzlies with 20 points, eight rebounds, eight assists and blocked three shots. Alec Kennington also flirted with a triple-double as she had 18 points, eight rebounds and 10 steals. Taylor Rose netted 15 points.

Logan travels to Mountain Crest (5-6) to begin region play on Thursday.

The Riverhawks (7-4) saw a five-game winning streak come to an end Saturday. Visiting Sugar-Salem (13-1) jumped ahead early and held Ridgeline scoreless in the second quarter, building a 35-11 lead at halftime. The Riverhawks won the second half, 30-23.

“Sugar is a great team,” Ridgeline head coach Ainsli Jenks said. “They are really, really good and play hard. We struggled to get in rhythm and couldn’t hit a bucket for a long stretch. We’ll be ready to get back to work.”

Haley Anderson led the Riverhawks with 15 points. Sarah Litchford and Macie Brown added eight points apiece.

BOYS GAMES

Three valley teams were in action Saturday. Ridgeline picked up a nice road win over 6A Bingham, 60-47, Preston took care of Twin Falls at home, 64-56, and Green Canyon fell at home to Madison (Idaho), 61-51.

The Riverhawks (5-7) trailed at halftime, 23-18, but overtook the Miners (6-5) in the third period. Ridgeline turned a three-point lead going to the fourth quarter into a double-digit victory.

“The boys were great defensively against a really good Bingham team,” Riverhawk head Kyle Day said. “We were able to defend in the half court and make every basket tough. Spencer Adams and Peyton Knowles set the tone on defense.

“Offensively, we were patient and took what was there. It was a fun way to end non-region play. We are really excited to start region play.”

Kaden Cox and Knowles led the Riverhawks with 21 points each. Knowles was 8 of 10 from the field and also had five rebounds, four blocks, three assists and three steals. Cox was 8 of 12 from the field with a pair of 3-pointers. Chase Hall added eight points and seven rebounds, while Adams dished our four assists.

The Riverhawks will begin region action at Green Canyon on Friday.

Preston (8-3) earned a hard-fought win against Twin Falls (6-4). The Indians outscored the Bruins in each of the first three quarters to build a 46-36 lead.

“I thought we had a great team effort,” Preston head coach Tyler Jones said. “We had lot of different guys step up. We had pretty balanced scoring with four guys in double figures and another with nine points. We had a big advantage in rebounds as well.”

Gabe Hammons led the Indians with 15 points, while Braden Hess had a double-double with 13 points and 11 rebounds. Cole Harris and Rhett Larsen each scored 10 points.

MONDAY GAME

The Green Canyon boys bounced back from Saturday’s loss by beating Minico (Idaho) 50-41 at home. The Wolves (7-5) outscored the Spartans (2-7) 21-7 in the second quarter to erase a two-point deficit en route to sweeping the season series between the two programs.

Brady Smith led the Wolves with 13 points, followed by Jared Anderson with nine and Jake Lundin and Jace Blotter with seven each. Green Canyon was without leading scorer Cade DeBoard, who injured his wrist while warming up for the game against Madison.

“Was really happy with how we dedicated the pace of the game,” GC head coach Dan McClure said. “Minico is such a tough, physical, hard-nosed team. They are so good defensively. I thought for the most part we attacked their pressure well.”

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HJ sports writer Jason Turner contributed to this report

Shawn Harrison is the sports editor at The Herald Journal. He can be reached at sharrison@hjnews.com or 435-792-7233.

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