Rough weekend for the Broncos

by Tad Barton
The San Juan High girls and boys basketball teams headed into last week’s games on win streaks and tied for the top spots in Region 15.
The girls were riding a three-game win streak and were 2-0 in Region play
The boys’ winning streak sat at eight games with their last loss back on Dec. 7.
Girls basketball
San Juan opened with the first basket of the game. The Lady Broncos built on the lead and held a 6-3 advantage just a few minutes after the opening tip.
Richfield then came alive though, and hit a barrage of three-point shots. In what seemed like the blink of an eye, the Lady Wildcats had a 21-9 lead after one quarter.
But the Lady Broncos didn’t panic. The girls came out in the second quarter with great determination on both ends of the court.
They outscored the Lady Wildcats 16-8 and cut Richfield’s lead to four, 29-25, at the half.
The two teams were neck and neck in the third quarter.
San Juan recaptured the lead briefly before another wave of threes from Richfield, who extended their lead to five, 42-37 at the end of three quarters of play.
The Lady Broncos made a few more runs in the fourth, but each time they did, the Wildcats answered with a run of their own, forcing San Juan to resort to fouling in an attempt to preserve time.
Although it’s an effective strategy at times, it wasn’t on that night.
The Lady Wildcats hit the majority of their free throws on the way to handing the Lady Broncos a 67-54 loss.
Seven players scored in the game for San Juan, led by Delaney Palmer’s 16 points and Bodell Nielson’s 14.
Madi Palmer, Syannah Ketchum, and Tasiah Little each finished with seven points.
Brittany Grove got two and Sadie Brown rounded out the scoring with one point.
Coming off the hard-fought loss to Richfield, the Lady Broncos looked to bounce back against the South Sevier Rams on Saturday, Jan. 12.
Both teams were dealt a heavy blow early in the game when the Rams Kenzie Jones collided with the Broncos Tasiah Little.
Neither athlete returned for the remainder of the game. They were definitely missed, but their teammates rose to the occasion, filling in for their injured allies.
Like the night before, the Lady Broncos found themselves in a hole after the first quarter, trailing the Lady Rams 20-11.
Also like the night before, San Juan battled back in the second quarter, trimming the South Sevier lead to seven points at the half, 31-24.
In the third quarter, the Lady Rams added two points to their lead, but it didn’t come easy. The Lady Broncos cut the deficit to two at one point in the quarter.
San Juan started the fourth quarter with a run, briefly taking the lead, but South Sevier once again overtook the lead, forcing the Lady Broncos into the same situation as the night before – fouling their opponent to preserve time.
Just like the night before, things didn’t go as planned.
The Lady Rams put the game out of reach from the free throw line and handed San Juan their second consecutive loss, 62-50.
Three Lady Broncos finished the game in double figures, led by Delaney Palmer’s 20 points.
Nielson scored 12, all from beyond the arc, and Madi Palmer finished with 10 points. Brittany Grover chipped in six points, and Katie Giddings had two points in the loss.
San Juan’s next game will be on the road. They travel to Castle Dale, UT on Thursday, Jan. 17 to take on the top team in 3A, the Emery Spartans. That game is scheduled for a 6 p.m. start.
The Lady Broncos will return home on Friday, Jan. 18 to host the Grand County Lady Red Devils at 4:30 p.m.
Boys basketball
After scoring 90 plus points in their previous two games, the San Juan boys basketball team hit an offensive snag last Friday night, Jan. 11 in Richfield. The Broncos struggled in the fourth quarter as the Wildcats pulled away on their way to a 65-40 win.
The game began with both teams scoring 15 points in the first quarter. Richfield took a slight advantage into the locker room at halftime when they outscored San Juan 12-10 in the second for a 27-25 lead.
In the third quarter, the Wildcats added two more points to their lead, this time by besting the Broncos 16-14 in the quarter.
After keeping pace with Richfield throughout the game, San Juan seemed to disappear in the final quarter, scoring just one point.
The Wildcats, on the other hand, put together their best offensive quarter of the game. They outscored San Juan by 21 points on their way to snapping the Broncos eight-game winning streak, 65-40.
The Broncos, who have shot well all season, finished just 17 of 52 from the field, well below their season average.
The Broncos brought a balanced scoring attack with four players scoring five or more points and seven players scoring.
San Juan only made three trips to the free throw line, going one for three from the charity stripe. San Juan pulled down 28 rebounds and dished out 11 assists.
Another stat well below their season average was steals. The Broncos went into the game with Richfield averaging over 10 steals per game, but only had six against the Wildcats.
The following night at South Sevier, the Broncos showed some resiliency coming off the tough loss to Richfield.
They battled the Rams right down to the wire, ultimately coming up short in a 68-62 loss.
The Broncos came out at the beginning of the game and scored 21 first quarter points. They held a three-point lead after holding the Rams to 18 points in the quarter.
South Sevier regained the lead in the second after outscoring San Juan 14-8 in the period, resulting in a 32-29 halftime score in favor of the Rams.
The third quarter belonged to the Broncos. They poured in 22 points and held the Rams to 13 to retake the lead 51-45 after three.
Once again, the fourth quarter proved to be San Juan’s demise. The Broncos were outscored 23-11 over the final eight minutes of the game, resulting in a 68-62 loss for San Juan.
The Broncos had four players finish in double figures and another just missing that mark with nine points.
The free throw line proved to be a big factor in the game. San Juan was six for 10 while South Sevier finished 23 of 29.
The Broncos played host to Monticello on Tuesday, Jan. 15.
Results and highlights from that game will be covered in next week’s issue of the San Juan Record.
On Friday, Jan. 18, the Broncos face off against Emery at 7 p.m. in a crucial game for both teams. The winner will solidify themselves in the top three of Region 15 and keep pace with league-leading South Sevier and Richfield who are tied for the top spot in the region.
The San Juan High School wrestling team was in action last weekend, competing in the Battle at the Pound Tournament, hosted by the Millard Eagles.
The Broncos finished the tournament placing 11th out of 14 teams.
Landon Burke (138 lb) placed sixth and Seth Spackman (126 lb) placed seventh.
Lymir Benn (126 lb) placed eighth and Landon Black (132 lb) placed ninth. Zach Palmer (145 lb) and Jeter Perkins (152 lb) each placed 10th.

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