South Summit boys’ basketball rolls in season debut
Before the season started, Coach Dusty Hatch knew the South Summit High School boys’ basketball team would be able to score a lot of points.
The Wildcats proved their coach right on Tuesday night, putting up 76 points in a season-opening 76-52 victory at Tabiona.
Even after scoring 76 points, Hatch said the team probably could have scored a few more.
"We did play well offensively, but we actually missed several easy shots at the basket in the first half," he said. "We had first-game jitters and were a little geared up. We settled in, though."
Mason Gines led South Summit with 20 points. Hatch said Tabiona was trying everything to slow the senior down.
"Mason had a really good game," he said. "They face-guarded him and tried to take him out of the offense, but he did a good job keeping his composure, not taking bad shots and trying to get his teammates involved."
Nick Beasley added 18 points for the Wildcats and Tanner Anderson had 14. Jason McNeil came off the bench with eight points, Caleb Peterson and Kaden Atkinson contributed six each and Brandon Dansie chipped in four.
"Mason and Nick were really good at getting to the rim," Hatch said. "Jason McNeil came off the bench and sparked us. He hit two three-pointers right in a row. Tanner Anderson did a nice job with his perimeter shooting as well. Kaden Atkinson is normally one of our better shooters, but he struggled last night. Fortunately, Jason and Tanner were able to pick him up."
On the other end of the floor, Hatch said the Wildcats struggled defensively, especially in the first half.
"I was actually a little disappointed in our defense," he said. "As a team, we feel like we can outscore people, but that’s not always going to be the case. Tabiona does a good job of getting you to play at their speed. I told the guys to slow down and play our type of game."
In particular, Hatch was not happy with the number of free throws given up by South Summit.
"Eighteen of their points came off free throws," he said, noting Tabiona scored 13 points from the line in the first half. "We were fouling because we weren’t in position defensively. We did a better job in the second half of defending without fouling. Our team defense has to get much better though, because we’re going to face opponents that are better offensively."
Beginning Thursday evening, South Summit (1-0) will travel to Odgen for the Pepsi Classic tournament. Over three days, the Wildcats will play four games — against Carbon, American Preparatory Academy, Ben Lomond and Ogden. Hatch said playing so many games in such a short period of time will show him a lot about his team.
"They’ll be tough games," he said. "I think, by the end of that tournament, we should have an understanding of our rotations — who’s playing and who’s coming off the bench — and how we’re going to be defensively. It’s going to be good for us."
South Summit will host its home opener on Friday, Dec. 18, against Uintah. Tipoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.
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The Park City girls tennis ended their season on Saturday with a sixth place finish at the 5A state championships. Freshman Olivia Tarmina, in the No. 2 singles spot, and senior Brooklyn Thompson, in the No. 3 singles spot, were both eliminated in the semifinals of their respective tournaments. With five of its seven players underclassmen, the future remains bright in Park City.