Get breaking news alerts via email

Click here to manage your alerts
Prep basketball: Morgan beats tournament host Riverton
First Published Dec 30 2013 11:35 pm • Last Updated Dec 30 2013 11:56 pm

After dropping their first five games of the season, the Morgan Trojans are now in full-on winning mode.

Just ask Riverton’s boys’ basketball team. As host of a 16-team holiday tournament, Class 5A Riverton entertained the 3A Trojans in the semifinals of their invitational on Monday night.

Join the Discussion
Post a Comment

And it was Morgan that drew to an even 5-5 mark on the season by outlasting the Silverwolves 79-75 in overtime.

"This helps us prove what we can do, helps give confidence to ourselves," said Morgan senior Ben Saunders after the win. "It shows other schools we can play with them, but mainly I think it’s a confidence thing."

Saunders had perhaps the single biggest bucket of the game for Morgan when he drilled a 3-pointer to start the overtime session. That three-point lead equalled the largest advantage of the night for the Trojans, which spent almost the entire two middle quarters of regulation playing from behind.

At the start of the fourth period, Morgan trailed 50-46 when Saunders was fouled trying a trey. He hit all three and that kicked off a 9-2 run that put the Trojans ahead.

But Riverton (6-4) reclaimed a four-point advantage down the stretch of the fourth when a Brandon Sly bucket was followed by a pair of Jake McCleary free throws for a 64-60 lead. The Silverwolves were still up 65-52 with 1:11 left when Matt Murdock hit a shot, was fouled, and converted the game-tying free throw.

In OT, after Saunders’ long-range shot to open the four-minute stanza, teammate Hunter Stanford got into the lane for a bank shot with 1:15 to play to keep the margin at three. From that point on, Morgan was repeatedly sent to the foul line as Riverton tried to fight its way back.

The Trojans hit nine of its 10 attempts from the charity stripe to secure the win. The last two came from Saunders, who finished with 21 points, with six seconds left.

Morgan, which also got 20 points from Garren Miles and 10 from Bridger Streadbeck, will play Timpview in the championship game Tuesday at 5 p.m.

story continues below
story continues below

Riverton was paced by Jeff Arens and Sly, who tallied 23 and 18 points respectively.

"The kids shot the foul shots down the stretch and got us the win," said Morgan coach Jim Wiscombe, whose team won the 3A state title a year ago.

"I think defense, and telling ourselves that we can win, was the difference," Saunders said. "Just playing as hard as we can, knowing we’ve got each other’s backs — that’s what helped us."

Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Top Reader Comments Read All Comments Post a Comment
Click here to read all comments   Click here to post a comment

About Reader Comments

Reader comments on sltrib.com are the opinions of the writer, not The Salt Lake Tribune. We will delete comments containing obscenities, personal attacks and inappropriate or offensive remarks. Flagrant or repeat violators will be banned. If you see an objectionable comment, please alert us by clicking the arrow on the upper right side of the comment and selecting "Flag comment as inappropriate". If you've recently registered with Disqus or aren't seeing your comments immediately, you may need to verify your email address. To do so, visit disqus.com/account.
See more about comments here.
Staying Connected
Contests and Promotions
  • Search Obituaries
  • Place an Obituary

  • Search Cars
  • Search Homes
  • Search Jobs
  • Search Marketplace
  • Search Legal Notices

  • Other Services
  • Advertise With Us
  • Subscribe to the Newspaper
  • Access your e-Edition
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Contact a newsroom staff member
  • Access the Trib Archives
  • Privacy Policy
  • Missing your paper? Need to place your paper on vacation hold? For this and any other subscription related needs, click here or call 801.204.6100.