Grantsville picked up two wins over the weekend, but it was pushed to the limit in both contests by the Ogden Tigers and Carbon Dinos.
The Cowboys (8-0) started the two-game weekend on Friday with a 62-59 overtime victory on the road against Ogden. They had to play from behind in the second half to force overtime, trailing 35-26 going into the fourth quarter.
But the Cowboys outscored the Tigers 23-14 in the fourth quarter to get to the extra period. Devin Adams led Grantsville with 26 points in that game, and Grantsville avoided the upset against a winless Ogden squad.
But after battling into overtime with Ogden the night before, Grantsville had to turn around less than 24 hours later to play against Carbon — a team that was hungry after getting blown out by Tooele the night before. Grantsville finished off the win at 44-42, but Carbon had one last chance with .8 of a second remaining on the clock to try and win the game.
With the clock winding down on Carbon’s final possession, the referee on the baseline blew his whistle when he thought Grantsville fouled a Carbon shooter. However, after the referees discussed the play, they decided there was no foul and instead ruled the play as an inadvertent whistle.
Carbon still had possession of the ball and only enough time for one more shot. They inbounded out at the 3-point line, the ball was heaved into the air and clanked off the rim for a miss, giving Grantsville the two-point win.
The Cowboys scored just one point in the final quarter, which was a made free throw by Jake Riding. They had a 43-28 lead over Carbon at the end of the third, which the Dinos gradually cut through to set up the dramatic final play.
GHS head coach Chris Baker admitted that his players were fatigued and didn’t come out with enthusiasm for the game against Carbon after playing a long game against Ogden.
“I was worried all day today about what we were going to have as far as legs-wise,” Baker said. “There was just nothing. You could see it in our kids.”
Baker said the Grantsville players came out of the contest against Carbon with a positive attitude, knowing they have to be better than they were in these two games.
“The kids know it,” he said. “They’re excited. They’re going to work hard on these five days off on our dead period. They have high expectations, and they expect to play better than the last two nights. As a coach that’s all I can ask.”
Baker said he and the players learned a lot about how fatigue can set in when playing games on consecutive days, especially when the state tournament comes around in February.
“At the state tournament, you’ve got to play three days in a row,” he said. “Are we going to use [fatigue] as an excuse? Or are we going to make ourselves better from it?”
Playing as an undefeated team, Baker said he expects to get every team’s best shot just as it went with a winless Ogden team and Carbon.
“When you haven’t lost, everybody knows that going into the game,” Baker said. “It was packed [at Ogden] for a team that was 0-7. They came out just like a buzz saw all over us. We weathered that, and then we have a downer today. So we’ll see where we are Jan. 2 when you go play at Cedar.”
Grantsville next plays at the Steve Hodson Cancer Classic in Cedar City on Jan. 2-4. It plays against Cedar on Jan. 2, Rockwell on Jan. 3 and Canyon View on Jan. 4.