Stangs edge Grizz in girls hoops
Mtn. Crest bounces back from rough 1st quarter
By Taylor Emerson sports writer
HYRUM â Ahead of Thursday nightâs matchup, the stat books told the story.
Two cross-town rivals with nearly identical records. Both fresh off of pummeling losses and both with a similar desire and will to right the ship and gather a much-needed win.
All the makings of a great game.
In the end, it was the Mountain Crest girlsâ basketball team which came away with the 53-47 victory over Logan at the ICON Activity Complex.
âWe definitely wanted this one,â MC starting guard Brooklynn Barrus said. âWe havenât played in two weeks, so itâs been a long time since weâve felt real basketball. I missed playing, so itâs good to be back, itâs good to get a W and itâs a good way to get the momentum started for us.â
Both the Grizzlies and Mustangs stumbled out of the gate, however, splitting six turnovers and just six points through the first six minutes of play. In fact, at that point in the contest the two teams were a combined 3 for 18 from the field.
Loganâs Mia Marin and Samalie Prom both knocked down a 3-pointer in the final two minutes of the quarter to give the Grizzlies the 8-4 advantage.
âI was nervous something like that would happen,â MC head coach Kevin Andersen said. âI didnât want to come out sluggish and slow, but we did.â
âWe really struggled,â Logan head coach Josh Zentner said. âFor whatever reason it just wasnât what we were looking for offensively.â
However, with the rust now shaken off and with their cold start behind them, Mountain Crest and Logan exchanged blows in the second quarter.
The Mustangs more than doubled their first-quarter efforts, netting 14 points, snatching four steals and claiming the rebound advantage with nine. But the home teamâs surge wasnât enough to regain the lead, as Logan matched Mountain Crestâs energy step for step.
The girls in crimson and gold again knocked down two 3-pointers and capitalized on an and-1 opportunity to extend their lead to double digits. But the visitors allowed the Mustangs to cut the Grizzliesâ lead to 22-18 just before the break.
âWe havenât been able to close out quarters all year long,â Zentner said. âWeâll get up on them, but it seems like we canât keep it that way. I told the girls if we give away points like that, it will always come back to haunt us in the end.â
The third quarter proved to be the most contested as the Mustangs rallied and fought for the advantage, while undergoing seven consecutive lead changes.
Mountain Crest continued to win the rebound battle, tallying nine team boards once again, and used that momentum to go on runs at 6-1 and 9-2 respectively. Loganâs main deficiency came at the free-throw line as it missed at least one shot on four of its five trips.
Heading into the fourth quarter, the Mustangs were up 36-31, their largest lead of the contest.
âDown 10 and down at halftime, we could have just hung our heads and gave up,â Andersen said. âBut we fought and fought and dug ourselves out of the hole. Our girls are fighters and they battled through it to the finish.â
After opening the fourth quarter with a Barrus 3-pointer, the Mustangsâ lead was threatened by five consecutive points from the Grizzlies. However, Loganâs struggles on the free-throw line, and the Mustangs success at the stripe, limited the damage done by the visitors.
âIt was tense, it really was,â said Barrus, who scored a game-high 21 points. âThese are the games we live for. Just to battle like we did, Iâm really proud of what we accomplished tonight. Weâre headed in the right direction and weâll only get better from here.â
Trinity Anderson and Tenna Child scored 13 points apiece for Mountain Crest, while Tori Craner led Logan with 14. Marin and Prom combined to net 19 points for the Grizzlies.
Mountain Crest will take on Sky View next on Jan. 6 in Smithfield at 5:15 p.m., while Logan will travel to Grace, Idaho, next Tuesday.