Archives for February 2017

 Junior Spencer Steadman goes for a jump shot over the Stansbury defense in the first round of the 3A playoffs. North Sanpete lost to the Stallions on a game-winning three-pointer, 44-43. - Kyler Daybell / Messenger photo


Junior Spencer Steadman goes for a jump shot over the Stansbury defense in the first round of the 3A playoffs. North Sanpete lost to the Stallions on a game-winning three-pointer, 44-43. – Kyler Daybell / Messenger photo

 

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Morgan's Chase Trussell defeated North Sanpete High wrestler Hootchy Brewer during the state 2A/3A wrestling championships earlier this month. Brewer took second place in the 220-weight class, and North Sanpete took 12th as a team.

Morgan’s Chase Trussell defeated North Sanpete High wrestler Hootchy Brewer during the state 2A/3A wrestling championships earlier this month. Brewer took second place in the 220-weight class, and North Sanpete took 12th as a team.

 

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Lady Hawks fall to Grantsville in first round of playoffs to lose, 62-43

 

Matt Harris

Staff writer

2-23-2017

 

GRANTSVILLE—The Lady Hawks season came to a close last week with a loss to Grantsville in the first round of the 3A playoffs.

            Unable to overcome a variety of obstacles in the game, the North Sanpete girls basketball team met their season’s end at the hands of the Cowgirls, 62-43. The team has not won in the playoffs in three years.

            “We came and played really well for about 26 minutes,” head coach Randi Griffith said. “We had a six-minute letdown defensively in the third quarter that they were able to capitalize on, and it really hurt us and our chances in the game.  The score does not show the whole picture of the game. We had them very nervous. It just ran away from us at the end.”

            North Sanpete held a two-point lead at the end of the first quarter before the Cowgirls hit back in the second to get a lead by three into halftime. That was when the meltdown began. Midway through a still competitive third quarter, junior Catherine Lund sustained an injury to her ankle that required courtside attention.

Taking advantage of the gaping hole in North Sanpete’s interior defense, Grantsville went on a 15-0 run. The Lady Hawks were already playing without starter Abby Smith, who was injured last week against Canyon View. The Cowgirls never let up after that, extending their lead in the fourth quarter en route to the victory.

            Lund led the Lady Hawks in scoring with 15 points.

The Lady Hawks end their season with a 6-16 record that testifies to the numerous struggles this team has fought through. During this season, North Sanpete suffered injuries to three of their starters and a nine-game losing streak. Seniors Angela Clayton and Smith both missed significant time with injuries during the season, while Lund had been sidelined for several games due to a concussion.

“I am incredibly proud of this group of girls and their efforts this year,” Griffith said. “It has been a very rough year full of adversity, but this group came to practice every day with positive attitudes and incredible work ethic. It is very rare to coach a group that comes up against the adversity they faced and doesn’t quit on each other and continues to work to get better. It shows what incredible character they have. They refused to let adversity be an excuse for them and continued to work and get better.”

Gunnison ladies fall in first round of state games to Layton Christian

 

Matt Harris

Staff writer

2-23-2017

 

OREM—The Gunnison girls basketball team fell in the first round of the 2A playoffs to Layton Christian Academy last Friday night, 59-40.

            Although many assumed that the Lady Bulldogs were unlikely to get the win, Gunnison looked far more solid against the top-tier Eagles than expected in the game that ended their season, hopefully, a sign of things to come. A poor start proved the biggest difference in the loss.

            “We are proud of the girls and how they played hard during the entire game against Layton Christian,” head coach Melissa Sorensen said. “We had a bad first quarter, due to inexperience and nerves. We played them closely the other three quarters. It was a good experience for our team to have, and hopefully, we can build on it in future years.”

            After the Lady Bulldogs already found themselves down 14-4 at the end of the first, Gunnison played respectably throughout, keeping the Lady Eagles relatively within blowout distance. Sophomore Kezzley Winn led Gunnison in scoring with eight points, while the scoring was effectively spread around the entire team.

            Inexperience has been a big factor in the struggles of the Lady Bulldogs’ 6-16 season, with only one senior, Jerusha Miner, on this year’s roster, while the better portion of the roster has been comprised of sophomores, including their top five scorers.

            “The team made a lot of progress during the season,” Sorensen said. “I think the biggest thing the girls developed was mental toughness and the willingness to play hard, regardless of the score or outcome.”

            As Miner graduates, the Lady Bulldogs have high hopes for next season, bringing back a solid core of players to hopefully end their playoff drought, now lasting three years.

 

Lady Badgers drop two games, now ranked third in the SWAC

 

Matt Harris

Staff writer

2-23-2017

 

SALT LAKE CITY— Consistency, which has often evaded the Lady Badgers all season, once again was not on their side in two losses last week.

            The extremely young Snow women’s basketball team continued to exhibit growing pains in both games, falling to Southern Idaho, 62-49, and No. 4 Salt Lake, 65-48. Snow is now 11-14 on the season and 6-8 in the Scenic West Athletic Conference (SWAC). Additionally, Snow officially ends the regular season with a 0-4 record against the nationally-ranked Lady Bruins and a 1-3 record against the Golden Eagles.

            “Salt Lake has a lot of toughness, which we’ve lacked at times,” head coach Mike Russell said. “They also know how to win, they have a winner’s mentality, and that’s something we’re working on. We’ve had Salt Lake up against the ropes, but their “refuse to lose” mentality has really played a factor.”

            First playing Southern Idaho last Thursday, the Lady Badgers held a slim, two-point lead at the end of the first quarter. A 21-8 second quarter by Southern Idaho was quick to erase all memory of that by halftime. The Lady Eagles led by as many as 21 points in the second half before the Lady Badgers could start chipping away at the lead.

            Scoring was lethargic for Snow, with both freshmen starters Harley Hansen and Madison Mooring held to a combined 0-12 shooting clip. Mooring also committed a ghastly nine turnovers to only one assist. The Lady Badgers shot a mere 30 percent on the day, with freshman Kate Anderson coming off the bench to lead Snow with 11 points and 10 rebounds.

            Salt Lake was guaranteed to be an even tougher test, and the Lady Bruins proved it right. Salt Lake, coming off their first loss in 16 games, led the Lady Badgers from tip-off to buzzer. Snow continued to be forced into ugly basketball, committing 19 turnovers out of their starters alone.

            Mooring led the offense with 10 points. Snow shot 39 percent from the field.

            With two games left in the regular season, Snow is on track for the No. 3 seed in the upcoming SWAC tournament. Only the tournament winner will advance to the national tournament. While Salt Lake and Southern Idaho have carved out their spots as contenders in the conference, Snow’s destiny remains uncertain. They are expected to win out their schedule with upcoming games against Utah State-Eastern today at 5:30 p.m. and on the road against Colorado Northwestern this Saturday.

            “Our focus is to close out the season on a high note, and to get that #3 seed heading into the tournament,” Russell said.

Russell remains confident about the Lady Badgers chances in the tournament. “We absolutely believe we can win,” Russell said, “but just like we tell our players every day, we have to quit talking about it and actually be about it. We have the players to win despite being young, so I definitely would not count us out.”

 

Lady Tigers fall to Lady Broncos, 58-57

 

Matt Harris

Staff writer

2-23-2017

 

            OREM—The season of the Lady Tigers came to an anti-climactic end last week against San Juan as the Wasatch girls basketball team fell to the Lady Broncos in overtime, 58-57.

            A game-winning three-point shot in overtime sank the previously 13-1 Lady Tigers unexpectedly, and San Juan pulled off the huge upset in the first round of the 2A playoffs after finishing just ahead of Gunnison in Region 15 standings during the regular season.

            “I have to give all the credit in the world to Coach Moon at San Juan and his players for playing so hard and executing a great game plan,” head coach Coke Whiteworth said. “We got out to a very slow start and just could never seem to get into any flow or rhythm. I was proud of our team’s effort overall, but San Juan just outplayed us, and so they deserved to win.”

            The game featured several changes in momentum between the two teams. San Juan had full control of the game at first, jumping out to a ten-point lead in the first quarter before the Lady Tigers trimmed it to seven to start the second. Wasatch began controlling the tempo in the second behind the unified scoring efforts of juniors Manu Oliviera and Vanessa Medina, but halftime still saw San Juan with the lead, 26-22.

            Wasatch took over in the third quarter, outscoring the Lady Broncos 17-12, and leading by as much as seven in the matchup, but the Lady Broncos would not go away. Fighting back in the fourth, San Juan got the better of a back-and-forth affair to tie the game and send it to overtime.

            In overtime, San Juan took the initial lead, but Wasatch got it back and led by two with 15 seconds remaining. Then the Lady Broncos’ Bodell Nielson made the fateful three. A half-court heave could not save the Lady Tigers’ season, and Wasatch was sent packing.

            Oliviera played an MVP-caliber game, scoring 29 points while Medina chipped in 19 points.

            Despite the early playoff exit, this season was one of optimism for the much-improved Lady Tigers, who had their best season in school history, finishing with a 13-2 record. With all of their star players, including their top three scorers, returning next year, there’s cause for excitement looking to next season. Whiteworth also expresses excitement over the fan and community support, which hit a whole new level this season for the young team.

            “As far as our season, as a whole, I am SO proud of the effort our girls put forth every day in practice to make sure we were always working to make each other better,” Whiteworth said. “We had some tremendous growth from our junior class leaders, and I expect they will play a huge role in the team’s development between now and next season. I am so thankful for such supportive parents, fans, and administration. Because of them, the girls feel very happy about the season, and are hungry to be even better next season.”

 

  

Snow College students and faculty, along with community residents, observe a moment of silence to show support for fellow students and local residents affected by Trump administration immigration policies.

Snow College students and faculty, along with community residents, observe a moment of silence to show support for fellow students and local residents affected by Trump administration immigration policies.

 

Snow holds solidarity vigil to show support for international students impacted by U.S. immigration changes

 

Matt Harris

Staff writer

2-16-2017

 

EPHRAIM—Heritage Plaza at Snow College was the setting for a vigil last week to show support for students and others affected by recent changes in immigration policy.

Organized by Snow student Aspen Nielson, the “Solidarity Vigil” on Thursday, Feb. 9 attracted more than 150 participants. Alex Peterson, director of the Center for Global Engagement at Snow, moderated the proceedings.

Attendees were mostly Snow students but also included faculty and a significant turnout of local residents.

Nielson, and other organizers stressed that there was nothing political about the event, nor was the event intended to convey anti-Trump feelings.

“The goal is just to let (international) students know that there are people who stand behind them. They’re not alone in this. I see this moving (Snow College) forward by preventing racism and allowing people to know that there is support. Students are empowered make really big changes and impact society.”

Nielson says the idea to organize the event came to her as she was walking between classes. “As a white, female college student at Snow College from Utah, I carry so much privilege,” she says. “I don’t take the risks that other people do from other countries”

“It was Aspen’s idea,” Peterson says. “She’s very smart, and an activist on some things, so she came to us and said, ‘How about we do this?’ and we agreed (to help).”

While most attendees gathered by the time the event started, Nielson estimates that as the hour-long event progressed, the crowd grew to at least 150.

Speakers included retired BYU professor Susan Elizabeth Howe, who recited poetry, and Peterson, who read a statement given a week earlier by Snow President Gary Carlston expressing the college’s commitment to international students.

Carlston’s statement is on display in the Greenwood Student Center.

 

Volunteers from the Gunnison Valley Fire Department don protective suits during a weeklong hazardous materials certification class in Alabama. The group hopes to establish a hazmat team to serve the Gunnison Valley and a wide area beyond the valley. - Photo courtesy Zachary Jensen

Volunteers from the Gunnison Valley Fire Department don protective suits during a weeklong hazardous materials certification class in Alabama. The group hopes to establish a hazmat team to serve the Gunnison Valley and a wide area beyond the valley. – Photo courtesy Zachary Jensen

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Former UHP Section 10 supervisor Lt. Thayne Carlisle, left accepts an award from UHP Major Jess Anderson on Friday Jan. 27, upon his retirement from UHP. Carlisle, who has also served on Gunnison City Council, has taken a position in security at Temple Square in Salt Lake City.

Former UHP Section 10 supervisor Lt. Thayne Carlisle, left accepts an award from UHP Major Jess Anderson on Friday Jan. 27, upon his retirement from UHP. Carlisle, who has also served on Gunnison City Council, has taken a position in security at Temple Square in Salt Lake City.

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Jamie Bawden (center) was named the 2016 Girls soccer player of the year on Friday by Mid-Utah Radio. Bawden is pictured here with her mother Merianne and her brother, Justin.

Jamie Bawden (center) was named the 2016 Girls soccer player of the year on Friday by Mid-Utah Radio. Bawden is pictured here with her mother Merianne and her brother, Justin.

Manti athlete honored as 2016 Girl’s Soccer Player of the Year

 

Bob Bahlmann

Staff writer

2-16-2017

 

 

 

      MANTI—Some of the sting of an injury-shortened basketball season was reduced for Jamie Bawden on Feb. 2 when Mid-Utah Radio honored Bawden as the 2016 Girl’s Soccer Player of the Year.

      The honor happened during the halftime events of the Manti/Gunnison basketball game.

      Bawden, who underwent surgery to repair a ruptured Achilles tendon on Jan. 30, was joined by her mother, Merianne and brother, Justin at the presentation of the award. She was selected by radio listeners from across the state and received 978 of the 1500 votes cast. She also swept the broadcaster voting and won the coaches vote before winning the listener vote.

                Bawden led the Templars in goals scored and helped her team win the Region 15 Championship and earn a trip to the quarterfinals in the 2A tournament. Her 30 goals were the second highest in the state at the 2A level and fourth in Utah overall. Her most prolific game was a five-goal effort in Manti’s 7-0 shutout of Emery

 

The Manti High Temparettes with their third place trophy.

The Manti High Temparettes with their third place trophy.

Manti gets standing ovation at State Drill Team competition
Music drops out, but show goes on

 

Bob Bahlmann

Staff writer

2-16-2017

 

      PROVO—The Manti High Templarettes finished in an impressive third place at the recent 2A State Drill Team competition, but perhaps their biggest accomplishment of the contest came when they pulled off their Military routine with no music.

      Less than a minute into the dance the music skipped and then skipped again. Seconds later it quit altogether.

      “We checked everything before, and it was all fine,” said Coach Chantelle Bell. “When the sound cut out they paused for just a second and then counted out the rest of the routine.”

      The team hardly missed a beat as they continued and performed well enough to advance to the next round of competition. As the Templarettes marched off the floor, the entire crowd in the gymnasium rose to their feet in a standing ovation, the only such honor the entire weekend of drill competition at Utah Valley University.

      “A lot of the girls had tears in their eyes,” Bell said. “Not because the music stopped, but because they were overwhelmed that everyone was cheering for them.”

      The judges approached coach Bell and offered to let the team do the routine again, this time with the music.

      Bell said, “They (the officials) said they had seen enough to allow us to advance, but even though the girls were tired and winded they all decided ‘we’ll go back out and do it again.’”

      Bell said that she has been inundated with texts and comments on social media expressing support and admiration for the way her girls fought through adversity and made the most of a bad situation. KSL TV got wind of the performance and featured it on their news broadcast on Saturday.

      “It kind of made our whole weekend,” Bell said.

                When asked how they were able to continue without the music, Bell said “We learn it all by counts and practice both with the music and without. They have just practiced it enough that they just know it.”

Lady Bulldogs lose to Wolves, but coach sees improvement

 

Matt Harris

Staff writer

2-16-2017

 

 

      GUNNISON—While the result didn’t look a whole lot prettier, Gunnison girls basketball head coach Melissa Sorensen is pleased with what she saw in her team last week.

      Despite a 57-22 drubbing at the hands of North Sevier once again, the Lady Bulldogs showed better defensive effort and a better second half against one of the top 2A teams in Utah. North Sevier had beaten Gunnison in their last meeting, 83-26.

      Gunnison, with the loss, moves to 3-7 in region play and 6-15 on their season.

      The Lady Bulldogs were completely overwhelmed and outmatched in the first quarter, as North Sevier outscored the Lady Bulldogs, 26-2, in that quarter alone. The Lady Wolves held a 43-12 advantage at halftime. The second half didn’t fare much better on offense for Gunnison, but the Lady Bulldogs finally pulled together a defense and held the hot-shooting Wolves to a mere 14 points in the second half.

      In her last regular season game as a Bulldog, senior Jerusha Miner led her team with nine points.

                Gunnison has qualified for the first round of the 2A state tournament with their record. Their first matchup is anything but soft, however, as they will be traveling to Orem to face Layton Christian Academy, who finished second in a powerful region 14 race with a record reflecting 9-1 in region, 17-5 overall.

 

Hawks season ends on downer with 51-29 loss to Caynon View

 

Matt Harris

Staff writer

2-16-2017

 

 

 

      MT. PLEASANT—Last Wednesday’s game did not go right at all for the Hawks, coming away with a loss to Canyon View, 51-29, to end the regular season.

      North Sanpete’s boys basketball team had all sorts of issues in the ugly game that was looking to be a good matchup between two of the top teams in Region 12, but Canyon View capitalized on everything the Hawks did wrong.

      North Sanpete found themselves in an early hole when the Falcons trounced them in the first quarter, 21-10. Though the Hawks got back within eight in the second, Canyon View jumped only further ahead in the third quarter, 17-4. Canyon View outscored the Hawks, 28-13 in the second half.

      North Sanpete’s leading scorer, senior Kaleb Bailey, only managed nine points, breaking his streak of double-digit games at four. Of Bailey’s 126 points on the season, 62 of them have come in his last five games. Sophomore Shawn Taylor had seven points and nine rebounds.

      The loss ends North Sanpete’s regular season at 6-15 with a 4-4 region mark, dropping them from second to fourth in the region standings, ahead of only rival Juab.

                North Sanpete does qualify for the 3A state tournament. In the upper bracket, the Hawks will face Stansbury at home tomorrow night at 7 p.m. The Stallions have a 7-13 record and finished third in region 10.

Lady Hawks late-season wins qualify them for state

 

Matt Harris

Staff writer

2-16-2017

 

 

 

 

      CEDAR CITY—Despite a tough season, the Lady Hawks finished the regular season strong and are moving on.

      North Sanpete’s girls basketball team halted a three-game losing streak with another win over winless Canyon View, this one coming from behind in a 41-37 victory. The Lady Hawks moved to 2-6 in region play, enough to qualify for the 3A state tournament.

      “We came out a little slow defensively,” head coach Randi Griffith said. “We gave them too many easy looks early in the game. At halftime, they really committed to fixing the defensive effort, and we played a lot better in the second half. It was a very physical hard fought game, and the girls were able to keep their composure and finish with a win.”

      The Lady Hawks nearly relinquished a seventh region loss to the Lady Falcons but got back in the game and took the lead in the fourth quarter, never looking back in the 14-8 final quarter tilt.

Senior Angela Clayton had her best game in a long time, finally at full strength after a long injury break and some playing limitations. Clayton led all scorers with 17 points, while Linzy Flinders chipped in eight. Clayton’s three-pointers, three of them, played a big role in the winning margin as both offense relatively matched each other on production.

“She shot the ball well,” Griffith said, “which was a huge boost to our team, and it was a lot of fun to see someone overcome a large injury and play at such a high level.”

                The Lady Hawks are 6-15 on the season and are in the first round of the state playoffs. They will be on the road to face Grantsville, who are 20-2 on their season and the No. 3-ranked team in 3A. They claimed the region title in region 10 this season. Game time is slated for Saturday at 7 p.m.

Lady Badger’s wins on the road bolster team to face top-ranked foe this weekend

 

Matt Harris

Staff writer

2-16-2017

 

      EPHRAIM—Snow College’s women’s basketball team earned an impressive pair of wins against Utah State-Eastern and Colorado Northwestern last week, beating them, 77-48 and 66-56, respectively.

      The impressive blowout of the USU-Eastern was a much-needed spark of confidence for the Lady Badgers, who curbed a three-game losing streak with the win. It is the third time the Lady Badgers have beaten the Lady Golden Eagles this season.

      “Our performance at USUE was one of the most complete games we’ve played as a team,” head coach Mike Russell said. “We controlled the game from the tip, and we withstood every Eastern run by going on one of our own.  To win on the road, in the fashion that we did, against a talented team says a lot about the direction we’re headed as a program.”

      Snow never truly left the game in doubt, already leading 21-11 at the end of the first quarter. Though the Lady Eagles kept on the Lady Badgers’ trail through most of the game, the Lady Badgers never let them get much closer before blowing them out in the end with a 24-7 fourth quarter for the win.

      The Lady Badgers got a lot of work done at the foul line, shooting 24-28 in a foul-laden game on both sides. The Lady Eagles could not capitalize on their end, only shooting 19-31. USU-E also had minimal production out of their bench, who only shot 1-19 on the day.

      Overall, Snow shot 46 percent for the game while stifling the Lady Eagles’ offense down to only 22 percent shooting. Freshman Tayviah Ah-Quin led all scorers with 24 points, while freshman Harley Hansen managed a double-double with 14 points and 10 rebounds. Freshmen Madison Mooring and Lindsay Cook added 13 and 12 points, respectively. Freshman Jasmin Chaves also had 10 rebounds off the bench. Snow overwhelmingly outrebounded USU-E, 48-31.

      Against CNCC, the Lady Badgers had their vengeance after their previous home loss to the Lady Spartans two weeks ago. Seven free throws and an extra three made the difference in a defensive battle as Snow picked up the win in comeback fashion.

      Down 11 early in the first quarter, the Lady Badgers fought their way back to a 22-17 deficit to end the first. They then commenced an air raid in the second, outscoring the Lady Spartans 23-8 before halftime to take a 40-30 lead. Snow never looked back en route to the 10-point victory.

      Two Lady Badgers earned double-doubles on the day. Mooring had 19 points and 11 rebounds, while Hansen picked 15 points and 13 rebounds. Freshman Kayla Hugie added 14 points.

      “Overall, we’re very happy to get the wins, but we also have to be subjective to continue making improvements,” Russell said. “We’re in a good spot right now, and we just have to continue getting better.”

                               Snow travels to face Southern Idaho today before traveling to face No. 5-ranked Salt Lake on Saturday at 3 p.m.

Wasatch Academy blasts Kearns 104-52

 

Matt Harris

Staff writer

2-16-2017

 

 

      MT. PLEASANT—The Tigers were looking as good as ever after a 104-52 thrashing of 4A Kearns last week.

      Wasatch’s nationally-recognized boys basketball team, already No. 1 in Utah, completely outmatched the visiting Cougars, who are 12-10 in their season and head to the 4A state tournament. The Tigers remain focused on trying to get into the Dick’s Sporting Goods National Tournament in late March.

      While it may have looked like the Tigers were running up the score to make their profile look good for the selection committee, head coach Curtis Condie assures that was not the case.     “We are not that type of program,” Condie said. “We have had the chance to score 100 points in games earlier, but that’s not how we roll.”

      Wasatch picked apart the Cougars defense from beginning to end, but  made the most of their effort on defense, holding Kearns’ top two scorers both under 10 points each.

      “What I was most proud of was our defensive effort,” Condie said. “We caused a lot of chaos on defense for them which created turnovers and a chance at fast break points. This was a great team effort.”

      In contrast, the Tigers were led by senior Josip Vrankic’s 25 points, while sophomore Bernardo DaSilva put in 24 more. Additionally, juniors Emmanuel Akot and Zion Young scored 17 and 11 points, respectively.

                               To finish their season, the Tigers played No. 15-ranked Jordan last Tuesday (score next week) and it is undetermined if there will be a postseason for them.