Prep girls' basketball • Beavers coerce Waterford into 34 turnovers.
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Orem • The defending state champs never allowed Waterford to get comfortable.
Beaver's defensive pressure created turnovers and suffocated the Ravens' offense.
The Beavers even shut out Waterford in the second quarter on their way to a 44-15 victory Friday in the opening round of the Class 2A girls' basketball state tournament.
"We take a lot of pride in our defense," Beaver coach Jon Marshall said. "That's something we really focus on. Maybe one of the reasons we don't do so well on offense is in practice, we spend the majority of our time on defense. That was our goal - make them earn everything."
Waterford committed 34 turnovers and only hit one field goal in the first half.
"We shot the ball well today, but I think in the long run our defense is our biggest key to our game," said Beaver senior Hattilyn Snyder, who finished with 10 points.
Beaver's defense swarmed to whoever had the ball for Waterford. The constant flailing arms in players' faces wore down Waterford.
"We tried to get out and pressure them with our half-court trap, and that was a big thing," Marshall said. "Some of their ball handlers struggled with the ball a little bit, and we knew that coming in. We tried to exploit that."
Waterford only managed to shoot 21 percent (4 of 19) from the field in the game.
Beaver's offense wasn't explosive, but it didn't need to be. The Beavers took 33 more shots from the field than the Ravens. Beaver shot 35 percent (18 of 52) from the floor.
"I felt like our post players, who are outstanding players, missed a lot of easy ones tonight," Marshall said. "We probably could have put a few more points up on the board."
The Beavers will face Emery County, a 56-44 winner over North Sevier on Friday, in Thursday's 4:10 p.m. quarterfinal at Southern Utah.