Boys basketball teams finish seasons
Cyprus head coach Tre Smith likes the enthusiasm of his team and now hopes to capture the work ethic. (Tre Smith/Cyprus basketball)
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High school boys basketball season has come to an end. Scoring is a focus area teams will work on all off season to help them attain their goals.
“We lost some tough games this season. I thought we would be able to win a few more of those close games. We have some talent. It is all in the attitude and energy we put into becoming above average,” Cyprus head coach Tre Smith said.
Granger won the most region contests amongst its West Valley neighbors. Their two victories (Hunter and West) exceed Hunter’s one (West) and none from Cyprus.
The Lancers came out on top in the “Battle of the Valley.” They defeated Cyprus and Hunter to claim the fictitious yet illustrious trophy.
They defeated Cyprus 51-38 in a preseason matchup. It was the team’s first game of the season. Granger cruised to the victory despite only scoring 17 points in the first half. Lancer senior Jordan Taylor scored 14 points in the victory.
Granger also defeated Hunter in their first of two games against the crosstown rival, 54-51. The Lancers led at halftime 34-15 and held on despite the Wolverine comeback for the win. Junior Anel Alagic had 13 points in the victory.
Cyprus defeated Hunter 74-63. Cody Meza had 27 points and Josh Peck contributed 22 in the victory. Meza is a 5-foot-9-inch junior and leads the Pirates in scoring with 12.1 points a game.
The Pirates Josh Ammasio, Brooks Marshall and Peck round out a balanced scoring attack for the Pirates. All three average nine points per game.
The three West Valley teams struggled this season to score. Cyprus led the schools by averaging 58.7 points per game. Granger and Hunter both only averaged 49. The offensive production became a problem when they could not stop their opponents. Hunter allowed 75.1 points per game, Cyprus 69.2 and Granger 54.9.
“I think we have some young talent that will help us improve. We just need the effort,” Smith said.
Hunter’s leading scorer is junior Pilate Makakona. The 6-foot-1-inch junior has averaged 15.1 points per game this season. He had a season high 30 points against Cottonwood. The double overtime win was the team’s first of the season. Hunter was down 15 points in the first half and fought back for the overtime victory.
Granger’s leading scorer was Alagic. He averaged 15 points a game and had a season high 28 against West Feb. 10.
The 4A and 5A boys basketball tournaments are scheduled to begin Feb. 27. No West Valley team will be participating. Hunter and Granger last appeared in the tournament in 2014. Cyprus has had a longer drought as they have not played in March since 2009.
Hunter’s head coach is Rob Collins and Granger has Jason Chandler and Cyprus Smith. All three are finishing their third seasons.
Next season the teams will compete directly for playoff spots. All three will be in 6A Region 2 with Hillcrest and Kearns. The UHSAA has realigned all participanting schools starting next season.