Bulldogs beat No. Sevier then
lose to No. Summit
By Ben Lasseter
GUNNISON—Continuing regional play last week, the Gunnison Valley boys’ basketball team (6-7, 1-3 conf.) defeated North Sevier (4-9, 1-2 conf.) at home 61-43 and lost at North Summit (6-5, 3-2 conf.) by a score of 60-71.
On Wednesday against North Sevier, the Bulldogs were able to capitalize on some size mismatches in the paint as part of an overall superior and more versatile offensive showing.
Seniors Harley Hill, Zach Stewart and Janzen Keisel put Gunnison Valley up 7-0 early in the first quarter. Sophomore Jon Willden and senior Payton Dyreng also contributed in a 14-2 start for the home team before the quarter ended at 14-6.
On defense throughout the first half, these players and senior Spencer Overly played strong man-to-man defense and as a cohesive unit, forcing the Wolves into turnovers and poor shot selection. Even when the visitors from Salina managed to string some open looks and tough shots together early in the second quarter, the closest score they achieved in the game was to trail 10-15.
Keisel and Willden largely set the tone in Gunnison Valley’s balanced scoring attack with unassisted points from different parts of the floor. Whether it was Keisel posting up and rising above defenders at the block or Willden streaking from beyond the arc on single dribbles, both got to the rim and hit jump shots starting early in the game.
At halftime, the Bulldogs led 26-19, and the second half only saw continuation of the control they established in the first half.
Four Gunnison Valley players scored in the double-digits. Keisel had 20, Willden 14, Stewart 12 and Hill 10.
Senior Creed Mogle, one of the team’s leading scorers this year, did not play against North Sevier after being on UHSAA protocol for COVID-19 but was able to return Friday at North Summit.
After travelling to Coalville, Gunnison Valley fell behind early and trailed 29-42 at halftime. Four of North Summit’s starters scored 63 of their 71 points and included a 6-foot-7 center taking up space in the lane on defense.
Keisel continued his big individual week with 24 points on Friday. Hill scored 12, and Mogle 11 in his return to play.
The Bulldogs will play another week of regional games this week. They travel to Monticello (5-7, 3-3 conf.) tonight, who won their last matchup on Friday, Jan. 15. On Friday, Altamont (6-4, 1-2 conf.) will come to Gunnison to play.