The Fremont girls’ basketball team found itself on the national stage this weekend, playing in the Dick’s Sporting Goods High School National Tournament in New York City.
And on the big stage in the Big Apple, the Class 5A state champion Silver Wolves shined.
One of the four teams in the girls’ side of the tournament, the Silver Wolves beat Miami (Fla.) Senior High, ranked No. 19 in the country in the USA Today poll, 43-33 Friday in the first round on the strength of 12 points and seven rebounds from Amanda Wayment.
Fremont coach Lisa Dalebout said the win opened eyes around the country to the style of basketball in the state of Utah.
“I actually felt very much like that when we came out here initially, we were treated very nice but very much like we didn’t have a chance against anybody,” she said. “But then we locked down on Miami and played solid, fundamental man-to-man defense. I don’t think anybody expected us to do it.
“I got a lot of e-mails and texts from different coaches around the state that just said, ‘Hey, we’re proud.’”
The win over Miami earned the Silver Wolves an opportunity to play at Madison Square Garden on Saturday, in a game televised on ESPN2. But they were unable to pull off a second upset, falling to No. 10 Riverdale (Md.) Baptist 60-35 in the tournament final.
Guard Shelbee Molen led the Silver Wolves in the defeat with 13 points and seven boards.
But even with the loss in the championship game, it was an experience the Silver Wolves won’t soon forget.
“It was unbelievable,” Dalebout said. “At times it was surreal. It was really neat to be able to play in the Garden. It was an incredible experience for our girls.”
Timpview quarterback Britain Covey, who led the Thunderbirds to the Class 4A state title, recently picked up his first Division I scholarship offer, from the University of Utah.
“I just love the support Utah has shown me,” said Covey, who admitted to growing up a BYU fan but no longer has a preference in the rivalry. “I love the Utah coaching staff a lot. It’s kind of relieving to get an offer before your senior year.”
Covey said he doesn’t expect to play quarterback in college and that the Utes have talked with him about moving to special teams and slot receiver.
“I just want to go to a school where the coaching staff believes in me and knows what role they want me to be,” he said.