Miner girls’ basketball holds on for win
When a team only makes eight of 23 free throw attempts in a basketball game, it usually doesn’t win the game.
But the Park City High School girls’ basketball team found a way to overcome the dismal free-throw numbers in a narrow 34-32 victory on the road against 5A Hillcrest on Tuesday night.
The Miners also had to deal with some adversity in the fourth quarter, clinging to a two-point lead as Hillcrest tried to win the game in the final seconds.
"They cut our lead to one and we brought it up to four or five and they brought it back down to two and then it came down to defensive stops," Park City coach Sam White said. "They tried to go the length of the court and we were able to slow them down and not let them get a shot off."
In the first three quarters, Park City kept extending its lead. After the first, it was 9-7 Miners. At halftime, it was 20-15.
"We weren’t making a lot of shots, but we were getting to the free-throw line," White said. "We were feeling pretty good going into the half."
At the end of the third quarter, it was Park City 30, Hillcrest 22. That’s when the Huskies made their run.
"We came out and spread the lead a little bit more in the third quarter, but then they started chipping away there at the end," White said. "It probably should not have been that close, but it was a good learning experience in clutch situations."
Senior Hanna Shluker led the way for Park City, scoring nine points on the night. Madeline Komisar and Jessica Perry each had six points, Lirio Sanchez added five and Marina Mayo and Lexi Fulton each scored four.
That sort of balance and depth from the offense is a good thing, White said.
"We played seven people last night and it was fairly even in terms of minutes," he said. "Everybody’s got to be able to score."
Noticeably absent from the score sheet was center Rachel Brothers. White said Brothers excelled in other aspects of the game, but the Miners need some offense from her moving forward.
"That’s one thing we’re really going to have to focus on," he said. "We’ll continue to work with her. Defensively, though, she was amazing with her rebounding."
The entire defense was something to be proud of, White added.
"We had 10-15 steals and forced turnovers," he said. "They were super aggressive and we were on the ball as much as possible."
Moving forward, there’s one obvious area the Miners need to work on if they want to keep winning games.
"We’ve definitely got to work on free throws," White said. "We left probably 12-15 points on the floor by missing free throws. Our ball movement was good and our defense was good, but we’ll continue to tweak a few things there, too."
Park City (1-0) returns to the court on Tuesday, Dec. 2. On that night, the Miners will host Grantsville (0-1) in their home opener at 7 p.m.
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The 22-year-old won the X Games’ inaugural ski knuckle huck competition and followed it up by taking gold in ski slopestyle.