Prep boys' basketball: Lone Peak shakes off scare to beat American Fork
Orem • For a few minutes Thursday night, Lone Peak coach Quincy Lewis paced along his bench, yelling at a clock operator who let precious seconds slip away and at his Knights, who found themselves in an unfamiliar situation.
They were losing.
American Fork's first 3-pointer fell, then its second, third and fourth. Midway through the first quarter of a rivalry game too big for a high school gymnasium, the Cavemen pushed Lone Peak as hard as almost any team has this year and had a double-digit lead to show for it.
But once MaxPreps.com's No. 3 team woke up, the rout was on.
"We did not come out tough," Lone Peak junior T.J. Haws said after the 67-42 win. "And we cannot do that, because one of these time's it's going to bite us in the butt."
For a team that has steamrolled nearly every competitor save for a loss to the nation's No. 1 team Â Thursday's shaky start will help refocus the Knights, Lewis said.
"We'll use those first three minutes for sure the next week or two," the coach said. "But you look out there and there are good players. They've got good players. They're going to take a shot at you. ... You're not going to go through a season without somebody taking a shot at you."
American Fork (10-6, 2-1) fired first, but the Cavemen had trouble making baskets after Lone Peak went into a half-court trap. American Fork went the entire second quarter and well into the third without a field goal before center Ryan Andrus dropped in two of his seven points.
The Knights, meanwhile, dumped the ball into the post to 6-foot-10 Eric Mika. Haws slashed to the hoop and kicked the ball out to open shooters. Zach Frampton knocked down a pair of triples at the end of the first.
And when Nick Emery caught an outlet pass over his right shoulder and kissed a left-handed layup off the glass, a Lone Peak team that once trailed 10-0 Thursday night had a 20-point lead.
The senior Emery, despite having an off night shooting, finished with 13 points to become Lone Peak's all-time leading scorer.
"There's a lot of great players that came through here," he said. "Tyler Haws, Sam Burgess, my brother Jackson. ... I've been playing here for four years, and I really couldn't do it without the guys on my team."
Emery got plenty of help from Haws, who finished with 12, and Mika, who scored 16 and wowed the 3,100 fans at the UCCU Center with a pair of monstrous alley-oop dunks.
After Lewis emptied Lone Peak's bench midway through the fourth quarter, American Fork finished the game on a 12-0 run to help minimize the damage. Dallin Childs and Christian Wells led American Fork with 11 points apiece.
Lone Peak improved to 14-1 on the year and 3-0 in Region 4. The Knights also avenged a 58-50 loss to American Fork last year, their last loss to a Utah opponent.
Storylines Lone Peak 67, American Fork 42
R The Cavemen lead 10-0 before getting routed by MaxPreps.com's No. 3 team.