MT. PLEASANT—Known for defense, the Lady Templars needed a little more on the other side of the court, and with just enough time to go, they got it.
The Manti girls’ basketball team got the best of a young and struggling North Sanpete team last Thursday, edging by in a 55-50 win in Mt. Pleasant, thanks to a 25-point fourth-quarter by the Lady Templars. Manti’s overall record moved to 7-6 with a 1-1 mark in Region 14.
Despite being closer than was perhaps expected, the win helped to somewhat right the ship for Manti after they were blasted at home, 70-47, by Delta, who shot over 50 percent from the field all game long.
Not only did North Sanpete hang with Manti in the matchup, but the Lady Hawks also actually led for much of the game. They led the Lady Templars by six, 36-30, shortly after the fourth quarter started when senior Eryn Briggs knocked down a 3-pointer. After that, Manti mounted a comeback that would prove successful, and the Lady Templars ran away with a victory.
“Hats off to North Sanpete; they played great,” Manti Coach Brennon Schweikart said. “That was the best North Sanpete team we’ve played in four years. Our ladies battled in an intense environment in a rivalry game. That’s what North Sanpete vs Manti is all about.”
Senior Sharlie Alder led Manti with 15 points, while junior Heidi Jorgensen finished with 12 points.
Briggs led all scorers with 18 points for North Sanpete, hitting five 3-pointers. Junior Kortley Cook scored 14 points. Briggs has been dominant from the perimeter in the last four games, hitting 18 total from the arc for an average of 4.5 points per game. Briggs is now fifth in 3A in average 3-pointers made per game for the season.
The game was slow-going to start for both squads, but Manti jumped out to a 10-5 lead in the first quarter.
The second quarter was all North Sanpete, as the Lady Hawks outscored Manti, 21-13, to close out the half, 26-23. Prior to this game, North Sanpete was 3-0 when leading at the half.
After the two teams traded baskets in the third quarter, North Sanpete got out to a six-point lead off the 3-pointer from Briggs. As North Sanpete led, 38-32, senior Breanne Wayman buried a 3-pointer, followed by another 3-pointer from Jorgensen to even the score. Despite North Sanpete continuing to get field goals, senior Tiffany Hermansen kept Manti on pace with a number of drawn fouls under the basket, resulting in points at the line.
With Manti leading, 43-42, and just under three minutes remaining, Jorgensen buried a 3-pointer, then senior Rylee Jarvis made a putback layup. Manti got out to a 50-42 after a 7-0 run.
With 14.6 seconds remaining, North Sanpete gave themselves a chance when Briggs made three free throws to make it a 2-point game. On the next sequence, with North Sanpete needing to foul, Cook went to foul Jorgensen on the inbounds pass by pushing her, a grave mistake as it was not a play on the ball. Cook was assessed a flagrant, sending Jorgensen to the line for two shots and possession, which decided the game.
North Sanpete moved to 3-9 on the season and will stay home this Tuesday for a game against Union, followed by a road trip to Juab on Thursday.
Manti will be on the road against Juab this Tuesday.