NORTH LOGAN — Two of the hottest teams in Region 11 got defensive Tuesday night in girls basketball as points were hard to come by for long stretches.
It was close throughout the 32-minute game as the lead changed hands eight times and the contest was tied on four occasions. Green Canyon was able to overcome a six-point halftime deficit and celebrate Senior Night with a 46-42 victory against Sky View.
“It was definitely a defensive, gritty game,” Wolves head coach Alexis Bird said. “I’m very proud of how the girls rose to the occasion. We tried to focus on what we could control and buoy each other up. … I respect Sky View so much, and they are well coached. We knew this was going to be a defensive battle and come down the the little things.”
In other region action Tuesday night, Ridgeline and Logan bounced back from losses to set the stage for a league title game on Thursday. Ridgeline beat Mountain Crest, 50-30, while Logan rallied for a 55-46 win against Bear River.
Green Canyon (14-5, 6-3 region) can now share second place in region with a win Thursday at Bear River. The Wolves have won three in a row and five of their last six.
Despite winning the first meeting with the Bobcats, 71-58, the Wolves knew they would be in for a fight Tuesday night. Sky View (13-6, 5-4) came into the game having won four in a row, including back-to-back wins against the top two teams in the region. The Bobcats had not tasted defeat since playing Green Canyon.
“In spite of the loss, we are playing well,” SV head coach Vanessa Hall said. “We need to take care of business on Thursday and make sure we come ready to play. Then it’s off to state. As tough as this region is, we all have a chance to make a deep run at state.”
The Bobcats did go 6:30 between field goals from the end of the third quarter into the fourth. When they did score, it was another three minutes before they scored again in the fourth.
Meanwhile, the Wolves were making enough plays to stay in front after ending the third and beginning the fourth with a 7-0 run that gave them the lead for good. Maren McKenna hit a 3-pointer with two seconds left in the third off an offensive rebound to start the Green Canyon surge. McKenna Crane took a pass from Landree Spackman and made a jumper to give the Wolves the lead, and Jayden Beach finished another Spackman pass to give the hosts a 40-37 lead.
“Different people can step up in each game,” said Crane, who was one of six seniors honored before the game. “We have each other’s back. … We knew Sky View was going to be way tough, so we had to beat them with hustle plays.”
Sky View’s Macy Hellstern did tie the game, 42-42, with a 3-pointer with two minutes to play. But the Bobcats could not buy a bucket the rest of the way, missing four shots and turning the ball over.
Beach broke the tie with a rebound bucket and was fouled. She made the free throw.
“This was awesome with a rival game and our Senior Night,” Crane said. “It was such a team win. … We have each other’s back. That’s what we have preached all season.”
Over the final 43 seconds, the Wolves made just 1 of 5 foul shots and had one made free throw waived off because of a lane violation. Green Canyon was 8 of 18 from the charity stripe for the game.
“We obviously struggled at the free throw line tonight,” Bird said.
Spackman led the Wolves with 14 points and two steals. Crane and Maren McKenna each had 10 points. Crane also contributed seven rebounds, a game-best four assists and came up with two steals. McKenna grabbed eight rebounds and also had two steals.
“Our bigs (Beach and Crane) rose to the occasion,” Bird said. “I’m so proud of them. They play so much bigger than they are. Brooklyn Heap also played well. … McKenna drew a couple of charges, and we got some big offensive rebounds.”
Hannah Radford finished with a game-best 15 points for the Bobcats. Hellstern netted 11 points and dished out three assists. Melanie Hiatt grabbed a game-best nine rebounds.
Sky View used a 8-0 run to build a 10-4 lead four minutes into the game. The Bobcats wouldn’t hit another field goal for nearly seven minutes.
Green Canyon used its own 8-0 run to get in front as Spackman had two treys. The Wolves took a 12-11 lead into the second quarter.
When the Bobcats did start scoring, they hit a pair of 3-pointers by Radford and went on a 8-0 surge. Green Canyon went more than six minutes without scoring. Gracie Rigby drilled a shot from beyond the arc to give the Bobcats a 22-16 lead at halftime.
“I thought we played extremely well defensively in the first half,” Hall said. “To hold a team like that to 16 points and hold McKenna scoreless, credit to our team for that. We knew she (McKenna) was going to get some points. You can’t hold her down forever. In the second half they just made some buckets in some timely moments.”
Radford gave the visitors their largest lead of the game by scoring early in the third quarter. However, the Wolves responded with a 9-0 run on a trio of 3-pointers to take a 25-24 lead. There were four lead changes in the third quarter.
RIVERHAWKS 50, MUSTANGS 30
Ridgeline outscored Mountain Crest in each of the first three quarters for a big enough lead to cruise to the victory at Millville.
The Riverhawks (14-6, 7-2) bounced back after losing at Sky View last Thursday. Ridgeline doubled up the Mustangs (6-14, 1-8) by halftime, 26-13, and took a 40-19 lead into the final quarter.
“The girls played hard tonight,” Riverhawk head coach Ainsli Jenks said. “We shared the ball and played tough defense. Mountain Crest is a team that always comes and plays hard. I’m proud of the girls for battling and getting a win.”
Ridgeline blocked nine shots, came up with 13 steals and had six different players make a 3-point shot in the game.
Haley Anderson led the Riverhawks with a game-high 14 points, while also grabbing six rebounds and coming up with three steals. Sarah Litchford finished with nine points, five blocks and three assists. Macie Brown added seven points and seven rebounds. Nia Damuni helped with four assists and three steals, while Elise Livingston and Hallee Smith each had three steals.
The Mustangs, who have now lost six in a row, were led by Sadie Coggins with 10 points as she was perfect at the free throw line, making all six of her attempts. Paige LaRocco chipped in eight points and hit the team’s only 3-pointer.
GRIZZLIES 55, BEARS 46
Logan got off to a good start on Senior Night at Crimson Gym, but had a few problems in the second quarter to allow Bear River to take the lead into halftime.
The Bears (6-14, 1-8) were coming off their first region win of the season and overcame a 13-8 deficit to the Grizzlies (13-5, 7-2) after the first quarter to take a 20-17 lead at the break.
“The girls grinded out a good win on Senior Night,” Logan head coach Moganne Madsen said. “Foul trouble hurt us in the second quarter, but we responded well in the second half by upping the intensity”
Amber Kartchner heated up in the second half with a trio of 3-pointers in the third quarter and five in the second half. The Grizzlies took a 36-32 lead into the fourth quarter and added to it to end a two-game skid. Logan made 10 shots from beyond the arc.
Kartchner led the Grizzlies with 17 points. Taylor Rose netted 16 points. Izabelle Rudd had nine points and a team-best eight rebounds.
Olivia Taylor finished with a game-best 20 points for Bear River.