Cyprus junior forward Pablo Torres hit a corner 3-pointer as time expired to beat Grantsville 56-55 on Friday.
“The kids stayed with it, even though it was a broken play,” Cyprus head coach Tre Smith said. “We just hit a big shot. That’s what it comes down to sometimes, and we did that tonight.”
Down by one with 12 seconds left, Cyprus inbounded the ball to senior guard Logan Hendrickson. Hendrickson put up a 3-pointer with about four seconds left and was blocked by Grantsville junior forward Jackson Sandberg. Cyprus grabbed the loose ball, Torres called for it from the corner and knocked down the clutch shot to give Cyprus its third win of the season.
Torres finished with five points in the game,all in the fourth quarter.
“We got some stops, defensively. I thought the press started working a little bit better,” Grantsville head coach Bryan Detweiler said. “I think we went up with a sense of urgency and attacked it more. We got a little bit of an advantage down in the block that we were able to exploit. It just led to a stop, a made basket and another stop.”
Grantsville erased a 47-32 Cyprus lead with a 15-0 run that spanned more than eight minutes in the third and fourth quarters, highlighted by a number of forced turnovers out of a 1-2-2 full-court press. Cyprus was limited to nine points in the last 10 minutes of the game — six of which came in the final 19 seconds.
“They fought their butts off. The thing about Grantsville is, and I told my kids before the game started, they’re tough,” Smith said. “They’re hard-nosed guys. They’re competitive. They don’t lack in that category at all. I knew it was going to be a tough game. We’re not going to come in here and blow anybody out of the water, and they weren’t going to blow us out. It was going to be tight, close and it came down to who was going to make the right plays.”
In the first half, the Cowboys looked to have their best performance of the season, playing with a defensive intensity that caused Smith to burn a pair of timeouts in the first quarter. If not for Cyprus junior guard Jordan Orozco’s 3-pointer with five seconds left, the Cowboys would have gone into the second quarter with a 15-8 lead.
The Cowboys lost the second quarter 21-8 and shot a dismal 12-of-25 percentage from the free-throw line in the game.
“That would definitely have helped,” Detweiler said. “This game was a really good learning experience for us tonight. There were steps in the right direction.”
Sandberg had a team-high 15 points, while forward Ammon Bartley and guard Izaiah Sanders each chipped in eight.
The loss brings GHS to 1-5. The Cowboys will face Emery on the road at 7 p.m. Friday.
Cyprus junior forward Noah Burbidge led the visitors with 20 points, and Hendricksen had 14.
“I think what Coach Detweiler is doing here is a great job, and I respect the man to death,” Smith said. “I’m happy to have our friendship and hope he does well.”
Tavin Stucki has covered prep sports in Utah for more than 10 years. This story was not subject to the approval of the Grantsville basketball program.