Orem • As ceaselessly is the case, incomes one thing that’s tricky can really feel greater than a little bit rewarding.
The Westlake boys’ basketball workforce, which disappointed Region Three champion Riverton 64-54 in Tuesday’s first round of the Class 6A state match, is an ideal instance of that.
The Thunder had to win their remaining two video games to make the match, the second one a play-in sport with American Fork on Friday the place the Saratoga Springs college trailed by way of 10 in the 3rd quarter.
“We play in a very tough region and had to really battle to get here,” Westlake trainer Nate Carling stated. “We felt battle tested. Playing that play-in game Friday really helped coming in with this game. We already dealt with the reality of hey, you lose, you go home.”
Cooper Mattson, who led Westlake with 15 issues, 9 rebounds, two steals and two assists, had equivalent sentiments.
“We feel like we can beat anyone,” he stated. “Our region is so packed with talent. We finished on a good 2-0 run and had a lot of momentum in the state tournament.”
The Thunder additionally had to care for a gradual get started in this one. Riverton and tremendous sophomore Richie Saunders jumped out to a Eight-Zero lead and led nearly all of the primary part.
The sport grew to become early in the second one part when Jared McGregor were given scorching. He hit 3 Three-pointers and a unfastened throw to lend a hand Westlake temporarily erase a 29-26 halftime deficit.
The Thunder took the lead for just right early in the 3rd quarter and slowly constructed up the lead. Riverton rallied to inside of 51-50 with four:39 to play, however a large shot by way of Mattson and a few nice free-throw capturing by way of Austin White sealed the deal. White and Kakoa Baker each had 14 issues.
Saunders completed with 18 issues for Riverton, and Gavin Henderson added 15 issues and 11 rebounds.
So used to be this Westlake’s greatest win?
Carling wouldn’t move that a ways. He remembered when the Thunder beat a just right Brighton workforce to make the state semifinals a couple of years in the past. But he stated this ranked proper up there.
WESTLAKE 64, RIVERTON 54
• Westlake, which wanted a play-in sport win Friday, survives a gradual get started to disappointed Region Three champion Riverton.
• Cooper Mattson, Kakoa Baker, Austin White and Jared McGregor all hit double figures in issues for the Thunder.
• Sophomore Richie Saunders paces Riverton with 18 issues.