With one game remaining on the schedule, Viewmont and Davis (in Class 5A), and Woods Cross and Bountiful (in Class 4A) had each clinched a spot in the boys basketball state tournament. All that was left to decide was playoff seeding.
The week of Feb. 12-18 saw the four local teams come away unscathed. Woods Cross and Bountiful previewed in both their Region 5 games, while Viewmont and Davis did the same in their lone contest last week. With each team playing one more game before (after our press deadline) before the postseason, big things lie ahead for the Wildcats, Braves, Vikings and Darts.
No one in Region 5 has come within seven points of the Wildcats. In fact, eight of the team’s 11 region wins during its perfect march through the season came by at least 15 points.
Last week was no different.
Woods Cross crushed East, 85-52, and Highland, 80-55, as the Wildcats looked to be in prime form for a state tournament run. Woods Cross emptied the bench in both victories, and star player Trevin Knell led the way with 22 and 20 points, respectively. However, the Wildcats got solid contributions from others as well. Colby Richardson had 18 points against East. He added four three-pointers as part of his team’s barrage of 17 long-range shots. Trevor Trost had 19 against Highland.
After playing at Bonneville on Tuesday after our press deadline, the Wildcats will open the 4A state tournament Feb. 28 at the University of Utah against the fourth-place team from Region 7.
Bountiful’s impressive rebound from a difficult non-region season has led the team to the brink of a second-place finish in Region 5. Heading into its final league game, the Braves were 7-4. Though just 8-14 overall, the Braves are headed to the 4A state tournament.
Last week, Bountiful defeated Highland 78-71 behind a 39-28 advantage in the second half. As they’ve done just about the entire region portion of the season, Brig Willard and Ryan Pollard led the charge and were a handful for the opposition. Willard had a game-high 28, while Pollard, the 7-foot senior center, wasn’t far behind with 24.
The Braves crushed Bonneville last Friday by jumping on their foe early with a 16-4 lead at the end of the first quarter. The lead swelled to 20 by halftime and to 31 at the end of the third quarter. Pollard had 13 points, while Willard had 12. Junior Cooper Ohlson chipped in 11 points, including a trio of three-pointers.
Bountiful’s game at Ogden on Tuesday (after our press deadline) determined second place in the region standings. A win meant the Braves would play at Utah Valley University on Feb. 28 for their first-round playoff game against the third-place team from Region 7. A loss to Ogden would bump Bountiful to the third seed to play Region 7’s second-place team on Feb. 28 at the University of Utah.
The formula was simple for the Viewmont Vikings: beat Davis in the regular season finale on Tuesday, and they’ll claim at least a share of the Region 2 title. A loss would mean they’d need Layton to lose to get a piece of the crown.
The big rivalry game ended after our press deadline, but the Vikings put themselves into title contention with a 79-44 dismantling of West last Friday. The victory moved Viewmont to 9-2 in league play, tied with Layton. The Vikings raced to a 24-9 lead after the first quarter and never looked back. A total of 13 Vikings got in the scoring column, led by Lewis Johnson’s 20. He also had four rebounds and four assists. Josh Mordue added 11 points.
The 5A state tournament starts Feb. 27.
Davis entered its rivalry game with Viewmont on the heels of a 51-46 win over fourth-place Syracuse. The Darts used stingy defense to limit Syracuse to just 17 points in the second half and outscored their region opponent 15-9 in the fourth quarter.
Davis made just 11 of 22 free throws, but the team collected 11 steals and got 12 points and five rebounds from Braxton Taylor. It was the 11th time in as many region contests that the Darts had limited the competition to fewer than 60 points.
The victory moved Davis to 8-3 in league play, a game behind Davis and Layton. The Darts had already sealed a spot in the Class 5A state tournament.