Ogden • Once the monstrous crowd and the row of players and cheerleaders sang the final word of the Sky View High School school song, Ty Nielsen balled up in his fist his piece of the net he’d cut down moments earlier and let out a roar.
The senior went straight for the student section. He didn’t want to leave his friends, the hundreds of fans who showed up in bunches to support the Bobcats during their memorable Class 4A postseason run.
“It’s a dream,” Nielsen said. “These last four games have been a dream, but we knew we could do it.”
Defeating a No. 2 seed in the first round of the 4A state tournament and then moving past three No. 1 seeds isn’t a dream for these Bobcats.
They did it.
They won their first Class 4A state title since 1994 by defeating region rival Mountain Crest 56-50 on Saturday night at the Dee Events Center.
It’s been a while since Sky View stood atop the mountain. Nielsen said he wasn’t even born in 1994. But this team had as unforgettable of a tournament run as any team in recent memory.
They dunked their way past Timpview.
They clawed their way past a tough Olympus team.
They snapped Bountiful’s mighty 20-game winning streak on a half-court heave by senior Jalen Moore, a play that took the sporting world by storm, even earning a No. 2 spot on “SportsCenter.”
Then they had Mountain Crest. A team they lost to twice this season. A team that blew them out of the water once, then later beat the Bobcats at the horn.
But there were those kind of special postseason plays made on the state’s biggest stage. Junior Bryan Dority stepped up and had three huge fourth-quarter baskets. He pestered Mustang star Tyler Crosbie after the guard was heating up.
Senior Matt Dewey did what he does — he hustled. Junior Braxton Godderidge hit clutch free throws and jumpers.
“That’s called team basketball,” Sky View coach Kirk Hillyard said.
Moore, who finished with a team-high 16 points and seven rebounds in his final game as a Bobcat, said the team watched his half-court miracle on the bus ride back to Smithfield on Friday night. It was then that the team made a pact to not lose.
The Bobcats had come this far and would not relent.
“It makes it sweeter that no one thought we would be here in the first place,” he said.
Moore, a star heading to Utah State, the same place his father Jimmy played, is a pretty steady nerve. He celebrated, but he did not sprint around after the Bobcats won the title.
He did that the night before, and as he said, the moment finally would hit him the moment he stepped atop the ladder.
“It will set in when I cut the net down,” he said.