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Idaho Enterprise

Boys Basketball

After some time off, the Malad boys basketball team are back on the court with a full week of games.  The team began their games as they faced off against Ririe at home for their second matchup of the season.  Next, the team traveled to Bancroft to take on the North Gem Cowboys and then to Firth to play against the Cougars.  The Dragons faced challenges with every game, some bounces going their way and others.  Regardless of the outcomes, it was a week of good basketball for the MHS basketball team.

         The Dragons knew that the game against the Ririe Bulldogs was going to be tough after having played them multiple times.  With that being said, the team was determined to show up and do whatever damage they could against the adept team.  Malad came out strong, employing those principles of discipline, solid defense and aggressive rebounding that the coaches have been teaching over the season.  

         The game began with an aggressive start, Malad’s defense working at full tilt to keep the Bulldogs off their game.  It was the simple things like quick feet, hands up and good communication that enabled the Dragon defense to frustrate the Ririe offense, causing rushed shots and excessive turnovers.  This sort of energy kept the Bulldogs off their game, but also gave the MHS basketball team the boost to not only keep up with Ririe, but to pull ahead as the first quarter began winding down.  

         With Ririe up, 11-6, Braylin Tripp went in for the rebound, grabbing the ball just outside the corner of the key.  Taking just one dribble to drive into the key, Tripp went up for the jump shot to score two for the Dragons.  After the Bulldogs brought the ball back down to their territory, Tripp snagged another rebound, hustling it down the court on a fast break for an easy layup over the Ririe defense to bring the score within one point.  Ben Petersen hit a three after a double screen from Baylor Bean and Ryan Hubbard left the junior guard open for the shot to push the Dragons ahead, 13-11.  Bean hit another three pointer for Malad to beat the buzzer to end the first quarter, 16-11.  As the second quarter began, the Dragons were able to widen the gap to lead the Bulldogs by 8, but Ririe worked to whittle away the lead, eventually pulling ahead and ultimately winning the game, Dragons 34- Bulldogs 48.

         The final score was in no way what the team was hoping for, but it demonstrated the progress and improvements the team is making.  Coach Beutler commented, “We were really able to have them on the ropes for the better part of three quarters.  We were pleased with that progress and the kids made.”

         Next on the Dragon schedule was their away matchup with the North Gem Cowboys at Bancroft.  The MHS team came out ready to play, finding that sweet spot to keep their opponent down while executing their own offense well to lead out at the end of the first quarter, 16-7.  Over the following three quarters, the Dragons only expanded their commanding lead, even outsourcing their opponent in the fourth quarter 22 to 6 points.  Malad took home the win, 62-39.

         Malad’s final game of the week took them to Firth to compete against the FHS Cougars.  The Cougar put pressure on the Dragons from the get go, bringing an intense full court press, disciplined defense and skilled offense.  It didn’t take long for Malad to find the key to bringing the ball down with aggressive passes across the court and up the middle.

         Despite an intense and high energy game, Malad’s defense played with a lot of grit and discipline throughout the first half of the game.  The players were able to block shots, steal the ball and force turnovers without penalizing themselves or giving bonus shots to the Cougars.  

The Dragons struggled offensively to settle into a groove.  The team found moments to connect with hoop on fast breaks, rebound put backs and a few open outside looks but couldn’t get their shots to fall like they wanted. As the game drew on, Firth outpaced Malad’s scoring to ultimately win the game, MHS 19- FHS 54.

Leading up to the Christmas break, the Dragon basketball team will play Firth again on their home court and then head to Grace to play the Grizzlies.