Poor Dixie. Another sluggish start against Maple Mountain preceded a heartbreaking, double-overtime 60-58 finish for the Flyers at the Red Rock Rumble on Saturday at Burns Arena.
Nate Guymon — a 6-foot wunderkind who put up 27 points in the contest — scored the final bucket, driving the lane for a high arching floater that dropped in at the buzzer.
Dixie appeared stunned as reality slowly set in. This was a game the Flyers should have won and they let it slip right through their fingers.
“We need to figure out how to play two full halves of basketball,” said a weary-eyed Dakota Bair, who notched 12 points, including two clutch free throws to tie the game in the second OT. “If we would have done that, we would’ve won this game.”
On Friday against American Fork, the Flyers posted just two points in the first quarter. Against the Golden Eagle (5-2 overall), Dixie notched 11, but gave up 21.
As such, they faced an uphill battle throughout the afternoon.
At halftime, the Flyers trailed 28-20.
“We need more intensity,” Bair added. “We came out flat. We all came in expecting an easy game and weren’t focused enough.”
Dixie slowly chipped away at the deficit, pulling within seven heading into the final eight minutes where they found the momentum needed to seize control.
Blake Barney erupted in the fourth. First, he blocked Guymon on one end and hit a big time 3-pointer on the other.
Guymon retaliated with a trey of his own on the next possession, but Barney followed suite with a deuce to close the gap to three points, 42-39.
Dixie’s Sam Guymon stole the ball from Josh Phelps and dished it to Kyle Hansen for the basket.
Maple turned the ball over on the other end and Barney hit a pair of free throws to snare the one-point lead, 43-42, with two minutes remaining in regulation.
Golden Eagle coach Johnny Averett opted to put the ball in Phelps’ hands, and the 5-foot-10 senior drained the bucket and drew a foul against Wilkinson at the one-minute mark. Phelps converted his free throw for the 3-point play to put Maple up 45-43.
Undaunted, Dixie’s Jordan Hall cruised the court and found Kyler Smith under the basket. Smith extended high enough to bank the ball off the glass.
Maple’s KJ Hall missed the final shot as the horn sounded, pushing the game into overtime.
The teams jostled back and forth during the extended period. Drew Bates hit a shot for the Golden Eagle, and so did Barney. Bair ran the baseline for a reverse layup, and Hall hung in the air for a 5-foot jumper.
With a minute left, and the score tied at 54, Maple opted to hold the ball until time expired, but Phelps broke early. His shot from the corner fell short. The Flyers rebounded the ball and called timeout with 3.5 seconds on the clock.
In the huddle, Ryan Cuff drew up a beautiful play that was executed to perfection — Barney inbounded the ball to an advancing Smith, who made a bounce pass to a streaking-to-the-net Bair — but Guymon read the play and made a terrific block to send the game into double overtime.
“He was phenomenal,” Averett said of his star. “Not just because he scored a lot of points, but because he does all those things that no one else pays attention to.”
Trailing by two with 10 seconds remaining, Bair drew a foul and went to the charity stripe. The 6-foot-1 senior iced both shots to tie the game yet again.
Maple called timeout and drew up a play for Phelps, but Guymon saw an opening and seized the opportunity. He drove hard to the hoop, slicing through defenders until he reach the free throw line where he pulled up, hung in the air and dropped in the soft floater.
The buzzer sounded. Game over.
Dixie, now just 3-8 to start the season, slumped off the court and didn’t exit the locker room for a long time.
Guymon collected 17 of his points before the half and sank all four of his team’s 3-point shots.
“I felt good during warm-ups,” said Guymon, who joked afterward that he could’ve played all day. “My team got me the ball and my shots just dropped.”
DESERT HILLS 50,
PAYSON 35: Desert Hills (8-3 overall, 1-1 region) continued its strong showing at the Red rock Rumble, downing Payson for its 5th win in six games.
Jordan Hokanson led the charge with 15 points as the Thunder got off to a quick 13-6 start in the first quarter and never looked back.
Josh Anderson collected 10 points, including a spectacular bucket that required him to dribble the ball from near half court for the running lay in late in the third quarter. He also brought down 8 boards.
Payson (3-9) trailed by eight heading into the final period, but Desert Hills rallied with 22 points in the final period and kept the Lions at arm’s length.
VIEWMONT 51, PINE VIEW 43: The Panthers lost their third game of the season to the Vikings, closing out an otherwise lucrative trip to the Red Rock Rumble on a mildly sour note.
Jack Bangerter scored a team high 12 points for Pine View, who trailed the entire way. An 11-7 first quarter deficit eventually built to a 26-15 halftime hole the Panthers couldn’t climb out.
“I think our boys are tired,” Panther coach Darrell Larsen said. “We’ve pushed them as far as we can this season.”
Pine View fought hard and cut the deficit to nine in the fourth with less than a minute to go in regulation. But Viewmont hit timely free throws to ward off the late-game attack.
“I’m not gonna make excuses,” Larsen said. “Viewmont is a very organized, fundamental team. They definitely put it to us.”
A sense of calm pervaded the locker room after the game. The Panthers remained upbeat, despite the loss and even found time to exchange Christmas pleasantries as they departed for a well-deserved holiday.
Larsen didn’t mind dishing out a few clichés either, explaining how the loss was actually good for his team, who have played 11 games thus far, winning eight. “This break couldn’t have come at a better time,” he said. “It’s time for them to think about things other than basketball, important things like family and Christmas.”
The Panthers don’t return to the court until they face Snow Canyon on Jan. 4.
SNOW CANYON 64, NORTHRIDGE 61: The Warriors managed to outlast Northridge in an offense-heavy match that saw 17 total 3-pointers.
The first half saw a spectacular 3-point demonstration. Northridge’s Jacob Bigler dropped three from downtown, while Preston Christensen and Dallas Bond drained two apiece.
Not to be outdone, Snow Canyon’s Brenden Truman outdid everyone on the court with five 3-pointers for 15 points heading into the break (20 overall).
Chandler Gines (17 points) continued to impress with his athletic versatility. The quick guard was seemingly everywhere, playing great defense, passing the ball and driving to the hole. He dropped three buckets to create some space in the third, and then Nate Gottfredson (19 points) blew the game wide open with six points to close the quarter.
Northridge made a run at the end, benefitting from careless Warriors turnovers, but couldn’t close the gap despite a terrific 19 point night from Jacob Bigler.