The Emery High Spartan basketball team may have lost 76-64 to Wasatch Academy on Wednesday in Castle Dale, but the team gave supporters reason to be optimistic about the season.
For starters, the Spartans arenвЂ™t likely to face another team stacked with three players measuring 6вЂ™8вЂќ like the squad Wasatch Academy ran out. Secondly, the young Spartans competed until the end.
Emery head coach Todd Jeffs seemed quite enthusiastic when he spoke after the game.
вЂњItвЂ™s never encouraging to get beat, but weвЂ™ve got a young team,вЂќ Jeffs said. вЂњThe first game out against a very athletic team I feel encourage because we played hard and we had a few opportunities to really make a difference in the game.вЂќ
Jeffs went on to explain that he thought his team played with control throughout the game.
вЂњWe had a legitimate chance of getting back at them, so there were a lot of things that were very encouraging,вЂќ Jeffs said. вЂњThey got their feet wet, and theyвЂ™re only going to get better each night now.вЂќ
Jeffs wasnвЂ™t pleased with every aspect of the SpartansвЂ™ game, particularly their transition defense.
вЂњObviously theyвЂ™re a very athletic team and theyвЂ™re going to get a few [fast break points], but they shouldnвЂ™t get 20 against us.вЂќ
Jeffs said the team would work on overall toughness in coming practices.
вЂњI thought there were two or three times during the course of the game where huge plays could have been made that could have made things real interesting, and we didnвЂ™t make them,вЂќ Jeffs said.
Jeffs said improved mental toughness would give his players the confidence to go out and make big plays and take big shots. Jeffs said that mental edge would make Emery вЂњa team worth reckoning with.вЂќ
Dallon Cologie and Jordan Cox led the Spartans with 20 and 18 points respectively.
The game was broadcast live on ETV Channel 10.
Emery next travels to Duchesne on Friday to take on Rich at 5:30 p.m.