Home » News
Home » News

4A boys' basketball: Springville stuns Olympus in double overtime for state title

Published March 4, 2017 7:56 pm

4A boys' basketball • Springville wins in double OT after trailing late in fourth quarter.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2017, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Ogden • Magic might only come around once every half-century for the Springville Red Devils on the basketball floor, but it's no small serving when it happens.

Springville grabbed its first state championship since 1958 with an 81-79 double-overtime victory over heavy-favorite and defending champ Olympus on Saturday.

"We came into it thinking, 'We have the team to beat Olympus.' If it was going to be anybody, it was going to be us," Springville coach Justin Snell said. "Just because we didn't have to change who we were to try to win the game."

"Before the game, the coaches were giving us confidence, saying that we could play with these guys," said Red Devils senior Josh Elison, who finished with 28 points. "We had the mentality from the very start that we could win this game."

It really set in when another senior guard, Seth Mortensen, double-pumped near the top of the key and sank a 3-pointer to even the score 65-65 as time was running out in regulation.

"It's just the next guy stepping up and doing something to help the team," Snell said about Mortenson, who had only four points at the time. "He was supposed to be in the corner. I don't know how he ended up at the top. He made a play and made a decision, and we love it."

Springville (21-5) trailed by eight points when the Titans got a bucket from sophomore Rylan Jones, the game-leader with 29 points, with 2:17 left in regulation.

Give up?


The Red Devils chipped away approach by fouling to get Olympus (24-3) to the foul line in hopes of misses.

"It's what you've got to do, and you've got to get a little lucky," Snell said.

The strategy worked because there were misses and miscues by the Titans.

"I've been here 20 years and what a high school game," Olympus coach Matt Barnes said. "You watched us [Friday], down 25 and we never gave up. Today we're one or two free throws away and a couple of defensive stops. But Springville hit every shot — give them credit. That's the beauty of it: They managed the clock and hit shots."

The Titans weren't out of heroics just yet.

In the first overtime and down 75-71,

Travis Wagstaff sunk a 3-pointer with 26 seconds left in the first overtime to cut Olympus' deficit to one. Jesse Hullinger hit two free throws to push Springville's lead to three, but Wagstaff struck again. He stroked another long-range bomb with 10 seconds left to force the second overtime.

Both teams attempted to hold the ball for extended lengths of time in the second overtime.

Elison stole an Olympus pass and raced to the other end for a layup and a 79-77 lead with 1:25 remaining. The Titans deadlocked the game again on a pair of Jones free throws with 17 seconds remaining.

But Elison was fouled driving to the hoop in the closing seconds. He hit both free throws with 2 seconds left, and one last midcourt bomb by Jones was off-target.

"That was an incredible game. Olympus is a great team and they never quit, like we never quit," Springville senior Bennett Hullinger said. "It just ended up who had the ball last and who got fouled last.

"I had faith in our guys, that they would get it done. And they got it done."






Reader comments on sltrib.com are the opinions of the writer, not The Salt Lake Tribune. We will delete comments containing obscenities, personal attacks and inappropriate or offensive remarks. Flagrant or repeat violators will be banned. If you see an objectionable comment, please alert us by clicking the arrow on the upper right side of the comment and selecting "Flag comment as inappropriate". If you've recently registered with Disqus or aren't seeing your comments immediately, you may need to verify your email address. To do so, visit disqus.com/account.
See more about comments here.
comments powered by Disqus