Emery hosted its last region game on Friday against the San Juan Broncos. The Broncos won the previous meeting between the two teams in a 105-100 shootout.
The Spartans played tough defense throughout the game and forced the Broncos into difficult shots. Unfortunately for Emery, San Juan was making three-pointers from 3+ feet beyond the arc.
Emery began the game with a small lead, but the Broncos went on a small run to end the first quarter up 18-12. The battle continued in the ensuing quarter, which saw five of the game’s eight lead changes. The Spartans continued fighting and regained the lead to go into halftime up 41-39.
Late in the third quarter, the Broncos would tie it up for the game’s sixth tie at 54. Emery put in one more bucket for a 56-54 lead with one quarter left to play. The Spartans surged out in front in the last quarter and survived the final body blows from the Broncos to obtain the 82-74 victory.
Kyson Stilson led the team with 24 points with 18 coming in the second half. Kyler Wilstead had another good game with 16 points and eight rebounds. Cade Brazier recorded 15 points and a team high nine rebounds while Brax Jensen added 12 points and nine assists. Rance Jensen was a stud down low, doing the dirty work for the Spartans and limiting the Broncos’ points in the paint. Emery shot 51% on the night for its 14th win of the season.
Emery (14-7, 6-6 Region 15) will host Senior Night on Tuesday against the Green River Pirates (10-9, 6-3 Region 19) as the Spartans prepare for the state tournament. Emery won the coin flip against the Grand Red Devils, who defeated San Juan on Saturday, to get the fourth seed in Region 15. The opening round will feature a rematch between the Emery Spartans and the second seed South Summit Wildcats (15-7, 5-3 Region 13) on Saturday, Feb. 16. The Spartans defeated the Wildcats 69-53 in mid-December but South Summit presents a tough match up for Emery due to the Wildcats’ bigs down low.
All tournament games will be streamed live online and on ETV Channel 10. Be on the lookout on our social media pages for an upcoming State Tournament Bracket Challenge and fill out your brackets for a chance to win!