|The Spartans do some scrambling for the ball on their way to a win.|
The Emery Spartans basketball team love to shoot behind the line, they love the 3-point shot. They shoot it often and they shoot it well.
With at least two Emery Spartans, it seems that being close to the line is not necessary.
The Spartans took their game on the road twice before Christmas break and came away victorious each time, first over the Morgan Trojans 70-62 and then over undefeated 2-A Number 1 ranked Manti 82-79.
The Spartans then came home and defeated the Canyon View Falcons 67-45 to go to the holiday break 10-0. In the three games, the Spartans averaged 12 three pointers per game.
First against Morgan, the Spartans broke out early and rocketed to a 25-5 first quarter lead. From there the Spartans cruised to their eighth victory behind the Emery outside scoring. Bowie Jeffs lead the way with 22 points and three 3 pointers followed by Seth Powell with 17 points and five 3 pointers. Curt Jensen and Chandler Pearson also kicked in with three 3 pointers each.
The Spartans then visited Manti, where the Templar gym is very seldom friendly to visiting teams. The Spartans found the Templars to be a team much like themselves, not really tall but very quick and very good on defense.
Emery opened the game hitting five of their first six shots and bolted to a 13-2 lead. Manti responded with their own run and led the Spartans 17-15 before the first quarter ended tied at 21.
Manti outrebounded and outscored Emery in the second quarter to lead 44-39 at the half. Pearson led the way for the Spartans with 16 points, including 4 of 6 behind the line.
The second half was much the same, a tight hard fought contest. The score was tied at 58 after three quarters, tied at 69 with three minutes to go and tied at 77 with 1:02 left in the game. The Spartans were up by one with 48 seconds left, up by two with 23 seconds left, up by four with 13 seconds left, up by two with five seconds left and won by three.
Bowie Jeffs led the way with 23 second half points to finish the game with 34 points. He had five 3-pointers. Chandler Pearson added one more 3-pointer and finished with 23 points. Mike Truman had two and Seth Powell had one 3-point basket.
The Spartans then came home to host the Canyon View Falcons. As teams have a tendency to do following a big game, Emery started the Canyon View game with a little less passion. With a 3-point thriller the night before over the Manti Templars, the Spartans were sluggish out of the blocks and led Canyon View only by three at the half, 22-19.
As ugly as the first half was, the Spartans returned to form in the second half and won going away 67-45. Canyon View, coached by former Delta Rabbit coach Randy Simkins, applied intense defensive pressure the entire game but they were unable to derail the Spartans.
Bowie Jeffs again was the leading scorer with 28 points. Seven other Spartans contributed to the scoring, including nine 3-pointers.
Going into the week, the Spartans were ranked fourth by the Salt Lake Tribune.
They should go up this week in the rankings as Pine View and Dixie both lost again. Chandler Pearson and Bowie Jeffs are the top two 3-point shooters in the state, each has 32 3-point baskets.
Jeffs and Pearson are both in the top 10 in scoring.
The next home game is Jan. 4, 2003 at the Spartan Center against the Grantsville Cowboys.