One bad quarter was all it took for Grantsville to lose its tiebreaker ahead of South Summit in the Region 13 standings, falling to 2-3 with the 61-50 loss Friday in Kamas.
“Right now our backs are against the wall, but we’ve got to take it one game at a time,” Grantsville coach Bryan Detweiler said. “We’ve got a few practices till the next one.”
The Wildcats shredded Grantsville’s man-to-man full-court press early. Junior Kael Atkinson scored a layup in the press-break offense on the opening possession, and senior Justin Worthen did the same 91 seconds into the game. Senior forward Ryan Griffin scored a layup in transition to give South Summit its first lead of the game at 11-9 with about three minutes left in the quarter.
South Summit held Grantsville to just four points in the second quarter, despite the Cowboys being in the bonus for much of it.
“Offensively, it was better in the second half; there was movement,” Detweiler said. “But in the first half, it was awful.”
Grantsville didn’t execute well on the offensive end with minimal movement in its motion offense. The Cowboys turned the ball over at least three times on inbounds passes.
“We need to stop being content with being in the game,” senior forward Brady Arbon said.
The third quarter started well with a steal and a layup by senior guard Kevin Roberts to pull the deficit back to single digits.
Then in the fourth, Arbon made a 3-pointer at the top of the key, then stole the ball on the ensuing possession for a layup to cut the lead to eight.
Grantsville eventually got the lead down to seven points with another 3-pointer by senior guard Ryan Potter with 25 seconds left, but South Summit effectively iced the game from the free-throw line.
The Wildcats made 11 of 16 free throws in the final quarter, including an 8-of-10 performance by Atkinson, who finished with a game-high 20 points.
Roberts led Grantsville with 20 points, and Arbon chipped in 16.
Grantsville will next face Morgan at home Friday at 7 p.m.
“It’s now time for us to regroup. We’ve all got to commit to be better,” Detweiler said. “I just think we need to look at what’s directly in front of us right now.”
Author’s note: Tavin Stucki has covered prep sports in Utah for more than nine years. This story was not subject to the approval of the Grantsville basketball program.