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JOB OPENING FOR OFFICE MANAGER

The Sanpete Messenger

Lady Templars drop season opener to 4A Uintah, 48-28

Jamie Bawden takes the ball to the hoop in Manti’s opening game of the 2016-2017 season. Bawden led the Lady Templars with 11 points. - Bob Bahlmann / Messenger photo
Jamie Bawden takes the ball to the hoop in Manti’s opening game of the 2016-2017 season. Bawden led the Lady Templars with 11 points. – Bob Bahlmann / Messenger photo
Lady Templars drop season opener to 4A Uintah, 48-28

 

Bob Bahlmann

Staff writer

12-1-2016

 

MANTI—Despite a 20 point loss to Uintah on Tuesday, Nov. 22, the Manti girls basketball coach, Roger Watson, was pleased with his player’s efforts.

“They never quit,” Watson said following the 48-28 loss. “They never gave up.”

The team is quite inexperienced, having lost six key players to graduation last year.

“We have to find our own identity,” Watson said before the game. “You’re going to see a lot of new faces in a lot of new positions.”

With starting point guard Avalin Cook sidelined due to an ankle injury she suffered in the final game of the soccer season, the Lady Templars had almost no varsity experience at that spot for the Uintah game. That inexperience was evident as they turned the ball over 30 times in the game.

On the flip side, the team played good defense to force the Utes to give up the ball 26 times.

There were some first-game jitters as the Templars shot an ice-cold eight percent from the field in the first half to trail 12-1 after the first quarter, and 30-10 at the half.

The second half was a different story as the girls came out with more defensive intensity and more confidence on offense. Manti matched the Utes point-for-point in the second half, but couldn’t close the gap against the solid 4A team. The Templars shot a respectable 40 percent in the second half.

Every player on the Manti bench got into the game as the team gained some valuable floor time in a real game.

“Auri (Squire) exceeded her total points from last year,” Watson said. “I expect Jamie (Bawden) and Kjerstin (Birch) will exceed theirs next week.”

Bawden led the team with 11 points, all in the second half. Auri Squire had seven, three from behind the arc. Birch had five, Amie Squire had three and Leah Howe had two.

Birch, Howe and Amie Squire made their presence known in the paint as they helped the Templars out rebound Uintah 28-23.

This week the Templars hosted Maeser Prep on Tuesday (score unavailable) and will host American Leadership today before traveling to North Sanpete tomorrow.