Emery boys pick up two wins on the road
The Emery High boys' basketball team played twice last week and although the games finished closer than the players or the coaches would have liked, the team still ended the week with two victories. On Tuesday night, the Spartan team traveled to Roosevelt and defeated the host Union team 65-56 after bolting to a 39-21 halftime lead. On Friday night, Emery traveled to Manti and defeated the home team 60-58 after leading 34-27 at the half.
Union came back in the third quarter of the game with a better defensive effort that took Emery temporarily out of their game. After leading by 18 points, Union outscored the Spartans by 9 points in the quarter to make the Spartan fans just a little nervous. Emery responded in the final period as each team scored 15 points in the period and the Spartans won the game.
At Manti, Emery built the seven-point halftime lead only to get outscored in the third quarter by 11 and trail 45-41 after three periods. Emery responded with a 19-point fourth quarter effort and won the game.
Guards Dillon Wilstead and Bailey Faimalo have now fully stepped into the role of team leaders with their on-court play. The two are the leading scorers on the team, come away with the most steals each game and are the leaders in assists. While accepting that basketball is a team sport and this team is loaded in talent, Wilstead and Faimalo make it tough on defenses as those defenses cannot key any one player.
Dillon scored 14 points against Union and 27 against Manti while Bailey scored 23 against Union and 16 against Manti. For the season, Dillon is averaging 19 points per game while Bailey is averaging nearly 17. Both average around three rebounds per game, around three steals per game while Bailey is averaging nearly nine assists per game and Dillon three assists per game.
Emery has a good inside game with Drexler Tanner, Gavin McDermott and Beau Roundy. The three average a combined 20 rebounds per game, two thirds of the team total. The three also average over 15 points per game and have blocked 14 shots. More importantly they are not fouling out of games and are playing well the entire game.
Last week at Union, also scoring in the game were McDermott with 12 points, McKlane Allred and Tyson Roper with 5 points each and Tanner with 4 points.
At Manti, Tanner pulled down 8 rebounds while Gavin had 5 and Roundy had 4 rebounds. Wilstead had 5 steals in the game to lead the team while Faimalo and McDermott each had 3 steals. Faimalo had 9 assists and Wilstead 2 assists.
Also scoring in the game were McDermott with 5 points, Allred, Tanner and Ridge Nielson with 3 points each, Roundy with 2 points and Tyson Roper with 1 point.
As soon as the Spartans consistently hit the three-point shot, the team will be hard to defend. The players are taking good shots within the context of the offense but the ball just doesn't want to drop. As soon as it does, Emery will be playing at championship level.
This week Emery has two home games but unfortunately for some fans one of those games was last night as the Spartans hosted Merit Academy.
On Wednesday night, Emery will close out their pre-Christmas schedule with a game against American Leadership Academy. Emery will travel to Carbon on the Friday after Christmas.