TAYLORSVILLE — The Timpview High School girls basketball team is headed to the tourney semifinals after defeating Box Elder 58-37 on Wednesday night at Salt Lake Community College.
Waiting for the Thunderbirds is a familiar tournament foe — the Skyline Eagles.
In last year’s 4A semifinals, Skyline defeated Timpview 52-45 to advance to the championship — something that the Thunderbirds’ players and coaches haven’t forgotten about.
“I’ll be honest, it’s a matchup we’ve been looking forward to for a long time — 12 months, to be exact, to get another crack at it. That’s kind of the fun of high school sports is, rivalries are created, whether in your region or whether in the state tournament,” Timpview head coach Aimee Dorias said. “We know who they are, we know what they’re capable of, and I expect and battle and a good game to come.”
“We’re so excited. We just want to get it back, we want to get that W,” Timpview junior Taylor Ross said.
From start to finish on Wednesday, Timpview left little doubt as to who would advance to Friday’s semifinals, but a little doubt started creeping in around the second quarter. Timpview didn’t score for five minutes in the period but went on a 6-0 run that got the Thunderbirds rolling again.
During the drought, Timpview stepped up on the defensive end, holding Box Elder to just six points in the second quarter. The Thunderbirds didn’t let Box Elder back into the contest the rest of the way.
“We missed a bunch of easy stuff, but they were getting the easy stuff by doing the right things, so even though they missed things, I don’t think they clamped up today because they knew that — fundamentally — they were getting it with correct principles,” Dorias said.
Ross scored 15 points and got her shot working early, scoring 11 points before halftime.
“That’s the crazy thing about this team we have right now is any person can step up on any given night. Tonight, early, it was Taylor Ross that took the weight on her shoulders and let everybody else ease into their offensive game with a little less pressure,” Dorias said.
Espinoza scored 19 points in the win, her third highest point total of the 2017-18 season, and Fano added 14, scoring seven points in each half.
“She was so good, she helped a ton. She just works so hard and runs a lot,” Ross said of Espinoza.
Now, the Thunderbirds can finally look forward to the matchup they’ve been waiting for, a date with the Eagles to settle old scores. But that’s not all the semifinal contest is about. For Ross, it’s a little more personal.
“It’s so exciting. We’ve been playing together, some of us, since fifth grade, so it’s so cool to see that we’ve made it this far together,” Ross said.