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Semifinals a Utah affair

ST. GEORGE — Three Utah schools are among the four teams still vying for the Scenic West Athletic Conference tournament championship that sends its winner to the NJCAA national championship in two weeks.

Top seed and 12th-ranked Snow College is still the favorite after its 74-59 drubbing of a fourth Utah school, College of Eastern Utah. Led by All-American candidate Casey Cooke's 24 points, the Badgers rolled over the eight-seeded Golden Eagles, with a tough three-days-in-a-row tournament standing between them and a shot at the national title.

Lacey Yates added 14 points while almost every player on the Snow squad played double-digit minutes and only one player failed to score.

Salt Lake Community College advanced to the semis with a 74-63 win against host Dixie College. Bruin Brooke Hansen led all scorers with 21 points while three teammates joined her in double-digit scoring.

Bruin coach Betsy Specketer spoke with passion about SLCC's chance to bring down the conference monster Snow.

"If we take care of the ball we have a chance. We can beat that team."

A day after the Utah Valley men sent North Idaho back home, the Wolverine women did the same, earning a tough 50-48 win over the Cardinal. The game was tight from start to finish and featured Ashleigh Chamberlain as one of the heros hitting 7-of-11 shots for 14 points while collecting 14 rebounds.

In the opening round's only upset, Southern Idaho defeated No. 2 seed Ricks 71-67 behind Belinda Stubbs' 16 points. CSI squares off against UVSC followed by CSI vs. Snow in the men's bracket. The SLCC women face Snow in the starter of the evening session while in the men's nightcap, top seed and first-ranked Dixie faces Utah Valley.