South Summit basketball: ‘Cats prove worth in Ogden |

South Summit basketball: ‘Cats prove worth in Ogden

Christopher Kamrani, The Park Record

With 2.6 seconds remaining, Dusty Hatch, the new South Summit High School boys’ head basketball coach, saw his team trailing 39-38 Friday night against host 3A Ben Lomond in the first game of the Pepsi Classic Tournament. He had to draw up a play for the program he’s always envisioned leading.

"As a coach, you never like to be in those situations. You always like to be ahead," he said. "But it is fun to have to coach and have to come up with things last second."

After the Wildcats were whistled for a "tough call," Hatch said, Ben Lomond’s Fernando Paredes made 1-of-2 free throws giving South Summit 2.6 seconds to shock the home team.

The Wildcats missed a 25-footer at the buzzer.

"It was a great game," Hatch said. "Both teams played fundamentally sound games, good defenses, which show by the scoring. We got a good look out of the play we ran, but unfortunately we lost. Both teams played extremely hard."

For a team that has just three varsity-specific players, the South Summit Wildcats made a good showing in the opening weekend to their season.

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After the one-point loss to Ben Lomond Friday, South Summit bounced back to beat Layton Christian 51-44 Saturday afternoon. Sophomore forward Beau Rydalch scored a game-high 17 points in the Wildcats’ first win of the season, while guard Matt Rydalch chipped in 11 points.

Although Layton Christian is a 1A school, Hatch said they towered over the Wildcats. The Eagles have two 6-foot-8 forwards and two 6-foot-6 combo players, but that didn’t faze South Summit.

"It’s somewhat ominous when you go out to warm up to see that kind of height, and for (the Wildcats) to get in and win that game, that was a big confidence booster," he said. "This was a big thing this weekend for these kids."

While his first win as a head coach was a plus, Hatch couldn’t help but speak highly of his team’s outing against Ben Lomond Friday night.

"We executed and that’s the most rewarding thing, to see them do the things you work on every day in practice," he said. "To go on (Ben Lomond’s) home floor, in a tournament where they usually win, and to be down one point with 2.6 seconds left, that’s huge for us."

Hatch said senior forward Bonner Mitchell had an exceptional game for the Wildcats Friday, scoring a game-high 14 points.

"He’s obviously going to be a guy we really rely on all year," he said.

Hatch also singled out junior point guard Jay Reidhead as a pleasant surprise over the weekend.

"He’s the one who probably stood out the most," he said. "He’s a point guard who had no varsity experience at all. Defensively, he was outstanding."

Next up for the Wildcats is the Richfield Tournament this weekend at Richfield High School, where the team is scheduled to face the 1-3 Kanab Cowboys Friday at 5:15 p.m.

"We’re going to approach it without having seen them," Hatch said. "We want to approach it like they’re a really good team, which they may be."