5A title matchup preview: Brighton vs. Lone Peak
Here's a breakdown of Saturday's Class 5A boys' basketball championship between Brighton and Lone Peak. It's at 4 p.m. at the Maverik Center.
Lone Peak (21-3)
Teams beaten • Kearns, Northridge, West Jordan
Player to watch • T.J. Haws. For most of this season, Lone Peak has been reliant on guard Nick Emery. But Haws, only a sophomore, has stepped up in his two most recent games, leading the team in scoring in both. He can shoot, drive and dish with the best.
How Lone Peak can win • The Knights can be a bit streaky, but the key is to get the lead early. When Emery, Haws and Talon Shumway are hitting their shots, Lone Peak is unbeatable. The Knights also need to rebound the way they did against West Jordan. Brighton can shoot just about as well as Lone Peak can, so Chase Hansen and Brody Berry will have to box out and make sure they don't get second chances. Expect Lone Peak to try to pressure and maybe trap Brandon Miller.
Teams beaten • Weber, American Fork, Riverton
Player to watch • Brandon Miller. The junior has come out of the shadow of his big brother and Harvard star Corbin this season and he might be a more complete player. He can penetrate and score in the lane, rebound and hit free throws. And of course, his 3-point shot is among the sweetest.
How Brighton can win • Lone Peak's greatest weakness is its tendency to rush offense and take a lot of jump shots. However, that can also be the Knights' greatest strength if they're hot. Brighton needs to play physical defense on Emery and Haws in the backcourt and get rebounds. On offense, the Bengals need to attack the lane. If Lone Peak big men Hansen or Shumway get in foul trouble, it's a big setback for the Knights.