Outside shooting decides game after dismal free throws.
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South Jordan • With Bingham 7-footer Brandon Morley clogging up space in the middle, Davis was forced to fire away from the perimeter.
The game plan played right into the Darts' hands.
Davis made nine 3-pointers seven in the second half to overcome the host Miners 60-56 in a nonregion battle on Friday. With both teams unable to hit clutch free throws, the Darts stayed in the game thanks to their outside shooting. It turned out to be just enough to neutralize Morley and the Miners.
"He's a good player who gets in there and alters shots," Davis' Jesse Wade said of Morley. "We had to trust that we could get open shots and find guys. It's all about trust with our team. We're all great friends a band of brothers."
Ironically, Morley, who finished with 17 points and 17 rebounds, made the Miners' lone 3-pointer of the game. However, he fouled out with 55 seconds remaining in the game and the Darts clinging to a 56-55 lead.
Each team had chances to take or build leads in the final minute. However, while Bingham went 1 for 3 on free throws, Davis went 4 for 8, pulling ahead for good on Chance Parker's free throw with 37 seconds left. The teams combined to make just 24 of 42 free throws in the game 57 percent.
"It's been a problem for us and not just this year," Davis coach Jay Welk said of his team's free-throw shooting. "It's like the kicking game in football some people take it for granted. Maybe we overthink it at times. We're going to keep practicing it. There was such a good environment tonight. That's what you want."
Wade and Abel Porter combined to make all of Davis' 3-pointers. Wade, who finished with 18 points, made four of his five 3s in the second half. Porter, who led all scorers with 19 points, made three of his four after halftime.
"We've got good shooters," said Welk, whose team is undefeated at 5-0. "These guys can step out and stick shots. The thing I like is they're not afraid to take them. Parker was huge in that game. He's getting possessions for us, and we need those types of guys to be successful."
Bingham (2-2) held the lead for most of the first three quarters before Davis shot itself back into the game. The Miners matched their biggest lead (37-30) on Daylor Youngblood's free throws in the third quarter. However, Porter made a pair of 3-pointers and Braden Koelliker had a basket as part of an 8-0 Davis run.
Morley's uncharacteristic 3-pointer gave Bingham a 55-50 lead with barely more than three minutes remaining in the game, but Wade answered with consecutive 3-pointers to help the Darts finish on a 10-1 run to seal the victory.
Koelliker added 13 points and 10 rebounds for Davis, while Bingham's Jordan Evans had 12 points and five rebounds and Braxton McKee 10 points.