Utah Pump-N-Run falls in semis of Vegas tournament
North Las Vegas• An incredible run of upsets in one of the country's most prestigious summer tournaments ended Tuesday for a group of Utah's top high school and college-bound basketball players.
Utah Pump-N-Run Red fell 65-57 to the Texas Assault in the semifinals of the Adidas Super 64 club basketball tournament at Rancho High School.
West Jordan High's Jordan Loveridge led UPNR with 26 points and 11 rebounds before fouling out with 4:53 remaining.
The game was tied 53-53 when Loveridge was disqualified after picking up his fifth personal foul and then getting a technical for allegedly pushing an opposing player.
"He just flopped," Loveridge said. "I barely brushed him after he swore at me, and then he flopped."
Players get six fouls before disqualification in AAU ball, but technicals count as personal fouls.
American Fork's Marcel Davis, who has committed to Utah State, added 13 points and seven assists, only the second time in eight games here that he failed to reach double digits in assists. Recent Murray graduate David Collette added nine points and four rebounds, but also battled foul trouble throughout the game.
The loss ended a dream run at the tournament for the Utah team, which went 3-0 in pool play and then upset the Florida Rams, Compton (Calif.) Magic, Atlanta Celtics and Michigan Mustangs in single-elimination bracket play to make the Final Four.
UPNR pulled off three huge upsets on Monday alone, including a stunning one-point win over the two-time defending champion Atlanta Celtics in front of dozens of coaches from the country's premier college programs.
UPNR coach Todd Phillips, new head coach at Salt Lake Community College, said all of Utah's colleges had coaches in attendance at all the team's games in Las Vegas.
Coaches such as BYU's Dave Rose and Utah State's Stew Morrill were in attendance to watch Loveridge who remains uncommitted and other stars from both teams and see if the unseeded Utah team could pull off another stunner.
UPNR led 31-25 at halftime, but was in foul trouble most of the second half and fizzled when Loveridge left the game, scoring just two points in the final four minutes and 24 seconds.
Davis tried to pick up some of the scoring load for UPNR, but the Utah team was unable to overcome the loss of its best player, Loveridge.
The West Jordan star said he has six current scholarship offers, but that number is expected to grow after his performance the last five days in Las Vegas. Phillips said another player who helped himself was West Jordan's Jordan Pryor, who was 15 of 18 from three-point range in the tournament prior to Tuesday's semifinal game.
Texas Assault, which got 30 points from Marcus Smart, moves on to face Dream Vision of California in the championship game, which begins at 6 p.m. MDT and will be televised live by CBS College Sports.