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High school basketball: Mountain View overpowers Bountiful in second half for 4A girls tournament victory

OREM -- Using a big third-quarter run and strong fourth-quarter defense, Mountain View broke open a close game and cruised to a 54–30 victory over visiting Bountiful in the first round of the 4A girls' high school basketball playoffs on Tuesday.

Bountiful only trailed by four at halftime, and even had the game tied as late as the 3:15-mark in the third quarter. However, Mountain View responded with a 10–0 run and never looked back.

"We just opened it up defensively, stopped letting them get by us and started competing," explained Mountain View head coach Andrew Blanchard. "We didn't compete at the level we needed to in the first half, but we took a time out, got organized defensively and that led to a lot of offensive opportunities for us."

After extending the lead to 10, Mountain View's defense held Bountiful to just seven points in the fourth quarter, enabling the Bruin offense to close out the game with a 13–0 run over the final four minutes.

"We wanted to bring some pressure to them [defensively], and for the most part, up until the third quarter, they dealt with that pressure very well," said Blanchard. "Luckily for us, it's a four-quarter game and we got to them."

When the Bruins weren't scoring off fast breaks, they were pounding it in the post through Maddie Beeton and Lindsay Ezola. Beeton had a game-high 12 points and Ezola added 10.

"Ezola's a great player when she slows down," said Blanchard. "She missed some layups, but that can be fixed."

Mountain View now prepares to play Springville on Thursday afternoon at Salt Lake Community College after the Red Devils defeated Orem 70-43 on Tuesday night. Blanchard pointed out that Mountain View was the last team to beat Springville, who is 20–0 this season.

"We might as well put a little scratch in their armor," Blanchard said. "They're great, though. We need to play our best game of the season."