Orem • Lone Peak may not have the flash of some of the Knights clubs in the recent past, but solid play all the way around can do in an opponent mighty quickly sometimes.
That was the fate of Herriman as the Class 6A boys’ basketball state tournament began Tuesday. The Mustangs were tied in a low-scoring game with a couple of minutes left in the first half before the top-ranked Knights asserted themselves en route to a 59-34 victory.
“I think it wore us down a little bit,” Herriman coach Brad Tingey said about Lone Peak’s defense. “We got tired and it was just relentless. We just had a 90-second spell of softness, and against Lone Peak, it blows up quick.”
Lone Peak (20-3), which lost to Bingham in the Class 5A state title game last season, is on a 13-game winning streak as the Knights went through the Region 4 schedule undefeated.
Herriman (9-13) was the No. 4 seed out of Region 3, but the game was tied 9-9 after a quarter. Herriman, led by Alex Anderson’s nine points, still was tied at 15-15 with 2:22 before half when Moala Wall hit a pair of free throws.
“Our boys, I was a little disappointed with them. They came out slow, they came out flat,” said Lone Peak coach David Evans, who at that point called a timeout to try to pick up his team’s energy. “If you’re not up for the game and not playing hard, the team that’s up for it is going to win. Herriman showed that. They played hard the whole game.”
It didn’t take long for the Knights to reestablish themselves.
Chantry Ross, one of three Lone Peak players to score 13 points, converted a fastbreak layup on the heels of a missed Herriman free throw for a 17-15 lead with 1:44 left before halftime.
Jackson Brinkerhoff, also with 13 points, then scored on a turnover as the Knights ratcheted up the defensive pressure. That was followed by a Ross three-point play and a trey from the corner for Max Brenchley with 2 seconds left before half.
Lone Peak suddenly was up 25-15.
“We just need to come out and play hard every night,” Ross said. “I feel like we’re skilled enough and we work good as a team. I think honestly it just comes down to playing hard and getting the loose balls.
“We knew Herriman was scrappy, and I felt like they got the better of us in the first quarter, most of the second, too.”
The Mustangs actually started the third period with a 9-3 run, but Lone Peak’s next response — a 13-2 streak to end the quarter — would be the last one needed in the opening-round game.
“Lone Peak doesn’t make mistakes. They do what I want our kids to do,” said Tingey, who started two sophomores and two juniors. “If you’re not gonna get your hands up, they’re going to make a shot in your face. If you make a soft pass, they’re going to pick it off.
“There’s nothing necessarily spectacular about them, but they’re relentless and they make the right play.”
LONE PEAK 59, HERRIMAN 34
• Three Lone Peak players — Chantry Ross, Steven Ashworth and Jackson Brinkerhoff — score 13 points apiece while Max Brenchley adds 11.
• The Knights reel off 10 straight points in 1:44 to end the first half and take a 25-15 lead into halftime.
• Alex Anderson leads Herriman with nine points.