The No. 2, 3 and 4 seeds advanced to the semifinals of the 2A girls basketball state tournament on Thursday at the Sevier Valley Center, but top seed Beaver wasn’t so lucky as it fell to No. 8 seed South Sevier.
Here’s a recap of the four quarterfinal games.
Millard 50, Duchesne 43
It’s often hard to beat the same team three times in a season, but the Millard High School girls’ basketball team pulled it off against a tough Duchesne team Thursday evening during the 2A quarterfinals in Richfield.
Millard came out on top 50-43 after holding off several rally attempts by Duchesne.
“We knew it was going to be rough,” coach Melanie Bassett said. “We played them twice in region and they were close.”
The first meeting of the two teams was played in Fillmore and ended 58-56, while the second one was hosted by Duchesne, and closed at 46-42.
“It was a little nerve-wracking going into today’s game,” Bassett said. “I just told them to relax.”
Millard’s girls also focused on breaking the press during practice the week leading up to Thursday’s game.
“The press is usually what has killed us, so we went over a press-breaker a lot during practice,” Bassett said. “We only had a few turnovers, which is expected, but they did really well with it.”
Millard came out strong in the first quarter, going up 5-0 early. However, with 19 seconds left in the first stanza, Duchesne’s girls had captured the lead 10-9.
Millard’s Paige Cummings put up back-to-back buckets from the paint to reclaim the edge 13-10, setting the stage for the second quarter.
The teams swapped the lead four more times before the half. Kara Camp and Mary DeGraffenried each scored key baskets to help Millard build some momentum, closing the first half 28-20.
Duchesne pulled ahead again in the third, as Baylee Clayburn, Kelsey Grant and Grace Davis went on a 10-point jaunt, broken up by just one Millard score.
Cummings hit the net again from inside, followed by a 3-pointer from Oakley King to regain the advantage 35-31 heading into the final quarter. Millard was able to stay in control through the rest of the game to ice the win.
“We tell them all the time that it takes a team, all five of them out there on the court and the bench,” Bassett said. “It was a great overall team effort.”
The Millard girls move onto the next round of playoffs Friday at 5:50 p.m.
Kanab 52, North Sevier 35
Kanab jumped out to a 28-16 halftime lead on North Sevier and then stretched it further in the third quarter as it pulled away for the 2A quarterfinal victory at the Sevier Valley Center. Tyler Nez led Kanab in scoring with 11 points on three 3-pointers.
“Our girls played well after a shaky first quarter. North Sevier did a good job moving us off our spots with their perimeter defense and we had to make some offensive adjustments that our girls executed pretty well,” said Kanab coach Klint Glover.
“Anna Cutler did a good job adjusting and getting to the rim. Tyler Nez was money from the corner and freshman Taylor Janes is adding an element to our team in rebounding and scoring that we are excited about. Great team win, 11 girls contributed.”
All three of Nez’s 3-pointers came in the first half as Kanab took control of the game early.
South Sevier 40, Beaver 36
Aspen Okerlund scored 11 points as No. 8 South Sevier pulled off the big 2A quarterfinal upset over No. 1 Beaver 40-36. In a game that was tied heading into the fourth quarter, the Rams pulled ahead and then did the bulk of its scoring from the free throw line in the quarter.
Hazen Taylor hit a big 3-pointer in the quarter as well.
“We came in with a plan and our girls executed it. Beaver is well coached, disciplined and strong. We had to match their physicality and take them out of their game as much as we could,” said South Sevier coach Tracy Johnson.
“We came with heart, desire and no fear. Every girl bought in tonight. Everyone on the floor and the bench gave their all to propel us to the win. Our crowd lifted us with their loud support. It sure was great.”
North Summit 58, Draper APA 48
North Summit broke open a close game at the half by outscoring Draper APA 17-7 in the third quarter to pull away for the victory at the Sevier Valley Center. Hayzlyn Murdock led the Braves with 20 points, while Chezlie Langston added 16.
Harlyn Richins added a double-double for North Summit as she recorded 11 points and 10 assists.
““It wasn’t a pretty game, but we played hard. We got the ball in the paint enough to get the win. I’m proud of our girls for their effort tonight,” said North Summit coach Jerre Holmes.