"We didn't have any mercy on them. We can't stand those guysÃ¯Â¿Â½The fact that they play so dirty and talk trash throughout the whole game made this a must win for us" Hunter Baumgartner, Lehi Pioneer center, in the Salt Lake Tribune.
That is a pretty bold statement for a high school athlete to make and he made it about our Emery Spartans. This reminds me of that old adage about throwing rocks when you live in a glass house.
He is right though, certain Emery High players do talk trash and they seem to do it the entire ball game. But, to put this in perspective, so do certain Lehi players and players from almost every other high school boy's basketball team out there. So what is the big deal?
So what exactly is the problem with this Spartan team? Again the Salt Lake Tribune stated that these Emery Spartans seem to not be able to shoot the ball fast enough. Well that is our style. Emery plays basically all guards. We are not tall. We have to outscore people, not out defend them.
Even though the Pioneers were considerably taller than us, we could still have won that game if we simply had hit our 3-point shots at the same rate as we had done all season. The same is true for the game against North Sanpete. Unofficially, I had the Spartans four for 27 on 3-point shots against the Hawks and one for 18 against the Pioneers.
The Spartans had been hitting their 3-point shots at 38 percent through the first 12 ball games. If they would have simply continued that trend last week, they would have hit six more 3's in each game and won them both. Do the math.
It is a simple problem with a simple answer. Take the shot the defense gives and simply get back to scoring. Make the basket, win the ball game.
So who wins 3-A basketball this year? The favorite has to be the Pine View Panthers (17-4); they have the talent and the experience. The other contenders are the Dixie Flyers (17-4), the Judge Bulldogs (15-5), the Lehi Pioneers (16-5) and the Emery Spartans (16-4). Yeah, that's right. I put the Spartans right there if they simply get back to playing the game. Remember what got you to 14-0 and do it again. Emery, you are good, be yourselves and good luck.