ETV News Stock Photo by Dusty Butler
The Spartans could not have asked for a better start to the first round of the 3A State Basketball Tournament on Friday night. Emery was red hot off the blocks and began the contest going 6-6 from the field. Talon Tuttle led the charge, hitting two threes in the first quarter and finishing with 12 points in that span.
Emery quickly went up 13-0 and led by 17 after the opening period. The Spartans pulled ahead 31-11 before North Sanpete joined the contest. The Hawks were not about to surrender and started to make a strong push. They closed the gap to 11 by halftime, 38-27, and continued to battle.
The Hawks made it a one-possession game in the third quarter, applying pressure to Emery. In fact, midway through the fourth quarter, North Sanpete managed to stay within three points.
The sequence that changed the outcome was when Tuttle hit another three-point shot. Wade Stilson then poked the ball out to Tuttle, who quickly found Luke Justice on the wing for another three-point basket. That was part of a 9-2 run that put Emery back up by 12. The Hawks would not get close again as Emery took this one 72-59.
Tuttle finished with a game-high 17 points while Brett Rasmussen recorded a double-double with 12 points and 12 rebounds. He also finished with four steals. Meanwhile, Justice tallied 11 points and seven assists while Stilson added 10 points, eight rebounds, four assists and three steals. Creek Sharp added eight boards and Zach Tuttle scored eight off the bench.
The win put #3 Emery into the quarterfinals to face #6 Summit Academy on Thursday in Cedar City. That game starts at 9:30 a.m. and will be streamed live on ETV Channel 10 and online at etvnews.com/livesports.