Cold shooting and turnovers will derail any basketball team’s hopes of winning, particularly against a talented opponent.
Such was the case for the Stansbury boys on Wednesday night, who saw their home opener spoiled by a 67-39 loss to Bear River in which the Stallions went more than 13 minutes without a field goal. As a result, the visiting Bears built a 29-point halftime advantage, meaning Stansbury’s strong second half was a case of too little, too late.
The Stallions (1-1) struggled to hang onto the ball early in the contest, allowing Bear River (2-0) to open the game on a 16-2 run behind the shooting of Wyatt Roholt and Ren Fonnesbeck. Stansbury appeared to build some momentum in the final minute of the quarter with back-to-back and-ones by Payton Gaillard to cut the lead to 16-8, but it turned out the Stallions’ struggles were only beginning.
Gaillard’s second and-one with 37.9 seconds left in the opening quarter marked the final points Stansbury would score until Kale Vorwaller’s free throw at the 4:18 mark of the third quarter, and the Stallions’ final field goal until Jaden Jenkins hit a 3-pointer with 3:29 left in the third. Between those two field goals, Bear River outscored Stansbury 25-1, leading by as many as 32 points.
Stansbury’s offense did find a spark in the second half after the game got out of hand, scoring 22 fourth-quarter points. The early offensive struggles also overshadowed a solid defensive effort that didn’t go unnoticed by the Stansbury sideline, though the Stallions’ coaches were left to lament too many missed opportunities at the offensive end.
Peyton Thevenot led the Stallions with eight points, including a 3-pointer. Jenkins had seven, Gaillard had six and Kru Huxford added five. Pae Tia scored four points, Cameron Jones had three, Jet Richins and Kayden Taylor each scored two and Vorwaller and David Spaulding each scored one.
Roholt led all scorers with 17 points in the win for Bear River, which hit seven 3-pointers. Fonnesbeck had 13 points, Mark Huber had 11 and Logan Litchford had 10.
Things won’t get any easier for the Stallions going forward. On Friday, they will face Dixie as part of the Central Utah Boys Basketball Preview in Richfield, with a game against Pine View the following afternoon. Their next home game is Wednesday against Payson.