Taylorsville • Earlier this season, after her Timpview team lost for a second time to undefeated Springville, coach Casey Cooke made her Thunderbirds a promise.
"This is not the last time you're going to see them," Cooke recalled saying. "You will see them in the championship game."
The Red Devils and Thunderbirds indeed will meet again in Saturday's Class 4A final at Salt Lake Community College, thanks in part to a dramatic overtime victory for Timpview the T-birds' second in two days.
"The girls battled," Cooke said after pulling out a 56-55 win over Sky View. "This group that I have right now, they believe in themselves."
Timpview started the game by pounding the ball inside to center Audrey Smith, who put up seven first-quarter points. Sky View responded with terrific outside shooting, led by Lindsey Jensen and Kendra Falslev.
Jensen, a sophomore who finished with a game-high 22 points, knocked down five 3-pointers and helped give the Bobcats an eight-point lead going into the fourth quarter.
But then Sky View sputtered. The Bobcats mustered a single field goal in the final period.
Timpview, which erased a second-half deficit Thursday and hit a buzzer-beater to slip past Orem in the quarterfinals, went to work on another comeback. Lauryn Dela Cruz scored five of her 15 points in the fourth. The T-birds also got 10 fourth-quarter points from guard Lyndie Haddock to force overtime.
"There were just a lot of ifs and should haves," Sky View coach Kimber Hall said after the game.
Haddock and her twin sister, Lacy, joined Timpview midway through the season after their family moved to Utah from Colorado, and Cooke credited them with helping to develop a new confidence among her players.
Lacy Haddock scored four of her eight points in the extra period.
"They've got that spark," she said. "They've got that sassy attitude type stuff. You've seen it rub off on the other girls a lot more."
Lyndie Haddock showed some of that attitude after the game when asked about Timpview's third matchup of the season with Springville.
"This time we're going to bring it to them," she said. "We're not going to lose a third time. We're going to win."