Taylorsville • Layton found the missing piece and solved the Bingham puzzle.
The Lancers rallied from a nine-point halftime deficit and made key free throws down the stretch to knock off the previously unbeaten Miners 41-38 Friday night in the semifinals of the Class 5A girls’ state tournament.
“I was hungry, I wanted that win. I didn’t want to lose,” an emotional Livia Treseder said. “This is the team I’ve been playing with since I was like 12 years old. This is my family. It would mean so much to take a state title with these girls because they are my family.”
The Lancers (17-7) advanced to meet Riverton in Saturday’s 4 p.m. championship game at Salt Lake Community College.
Treseder led a strong defensive effort that helped Layton rally from a 20-11 halftime deficit. The Lancers repeatedly trapped Bingham’s ball-handlers near midcourt and steals resulted in transition baskets or fouls.
Senior guard Ashley Price scored eight of her 11 points in the fourth quarter, including a three-point play with 2:07 left that game Layton a 36-34 lead from which the Miners never recovered.
“They were better than us,” Bingham coach Rand Rasmussen said. “It doesn’t take anything away from what we accomplished.”
Bingham was trying to become the third 5A team in four years to run the table and finish unbeaten. Senior Jillian Powell scored 10 points, but was shut out in the final quarter. On the final possession, Rasmussen drew up a play for Powell to attempt a tying 3-pointer, but Layton’s defense denied a screen and Whitney Daniels’ shot from the top of the key kicked off the rim to the right.
“This is all I’ve wanted since I was little,” said Price, whose father Van coaches the Lancers. “That’s to get to the championship.”
The Lancers, who lost to Bingham on a buzzer-beating 3-pointer on Dec. 29, overcame a 14-point deficit in Wednesday’s quarterfinals to beat Alta. Coach Price reminded his team of the feat at halftime Friday.
“I said, ‘You guys, why are we such slow starters?’ ” he said. “They thrive on that for some reason. It happened again. We got them again.”
O Riverton vs. Layton
Saturday, 4 p.m.
At Salt Lake Community College, Taylorsville.