by Tad Barton
In spite of shooting over 50 percent from the field and 45 percent from beyond the three-point line San Juan found itself on the wrong end of an 86-68 final score versus Emery last Friday night in Blanding.
The Broncos struggled to get shots off in the first quarter as they managed a meager six points in the opening quarter of play.
On the other hand the Spartans not only shot well, but also got more looks to at the basket knocking down 15 points of their own to get off to a solid start. After one San Juan trailed 15-6.
Both teams kept the gas pedal down to the floor combining to score 50 points in the second period. The nets were on fire with shot after shot falling on both ends of the court as each team scored 25 points in the quarter. When the smoke finally settled at the half San Juan trailed 40-31.
In the third quarter the Spartans remained red hot scoring 31 points while the Broncos cooled off a bit.
San Juan continued to shoot a high percentage, but too many turnovers limited their shot attempts resulting in a 15 point quarter for the home team. The game looked just about out of reach as the Broncos headed into the final quarter down 25 points, 71-46.
San Juan never gave up and took better care of the ball in the fourth quarter. They also stepped their defense up as they mounted an attempted comeback.
The Broncos scored 22 points while hold the Spartans to 15, but it was too little too late as San Juan dropped their Region 15 opener to Emery 86-68.
DiQuan Lopez led the Broncos with 22 points on the night, including 15 from three point range. Right on his heals was Tyrell Pemberton with 20 who also had a great night from behind the arc knocking down four threes of his own.
Matthew Castiano came off the bench to add nine points for the Broncos. Max Morley had 6 points, Javen Ivins added five and Terrance Tate and Eli Beck rounded out the scoring for the San Juan with four and two points respectively.
In the second game of the week San Juan hosted 2A powerhouse Wasatch Academy. The Tigers came into the game fresh off a win against Grand and continued to roll as they built a 57-26 lead at the half.
The Tigers didn’t slow down in the second half as they continued to build on their lead throughout the remainder of the game resulting in a 101-58 final.
The Bronco loss pushed their record to 0-2 in Region 15 while the Tigers improved to 2-0.
The first quarter of action saw Wasatch come out and take a commanding lead as they quickly scored 24 points to start the game. San Juan managed to toss in nine points and found themselves in an early hole 24-9.
The Broncos picked up the pace a little in the second quarter, unfortunately so did the Tigers. San Juan added 17 points to their total in the period while Wasatch Academy notched 33 pushing their 15 point lead to 31 points at the intermission, 57-26.
After an 18-point third quarter the Broncos would have been right in the game or leading for that matter in most contests.
This game however wasn’t like most as the Tigers added another 27 points to their total, to lead 84-44 heading into the fourth.
The final eight minutes of play saw the closest scoring margin of the night. Wasatch Academy again outscored San Juan in the quarter, but this time just by three points 17-14, capping off an impressive win 101-58.
Lopez again led the Broncos in with 16 points and once again he was hot from the behind the three point line making 4 of 9.
Tate also got his shot going in the game scoring 11 points including three of four from long range. Morley was also in double digits scoring 10 points, while Ivins chipped in six points. Jonathon Lewis and Caleb Pugh each had five points on the night. Beck and Castiano rounded out the scoring for San Juan with three and two points respectively.
The Broncos hit the road next week for another Region 15 matchup against the Grand County Red Devils. The action starts at 4 p.m. with the C-Team, followed by the JV at 5:30 p.m. and the Varsity game at 7 p.m.