LAYTON -- They may have come in with a 1-12 record and left with a mark of 1-13, but the pesky Fremont Silver Wolves gave Region 1 co-leading Northridge all it could handle.
The Knights used 19 points from Preston Christensen and four 3-pointers from Jacob Bigler, moving his class 5-A best total to 48, to outlast Fremont, 48-42.
"I think (Fremont) played really well," Northridge coach Chad Sims said. "They were well-prepared. And I actually thought our kids played really well, but shots weren't falling, so when that happens it's ugly on both ends. They match up well with us and we're just fortunate to come out on top."
After Northridge extended its lead to ten at 43-33 with just over two minutes to play on consecutive Bigler treys, Fremont started to chip away. Sophomore Spencer Jones and Kade Criswell drained back-to-back triples to pull within 43-39. Following two Christensen free throws, Jones made it a one possession game with 27 seconds left with an old-fashioned three-point play. However, the Silver Wolves wouldn't score again and Christensen and Dallas Bond hit key free throws down the stretch.
"I was happy with what we did," Fremont coach Corey Melaney said about his young team. "Sure we missed a few assignments here or there, but the loose balls, the dives on the floor, the effort and the communication out there was outstanding and encouraging. These guys are fighting to the end. They are extremely positive and they give me their best effort every day and that's all you can ask for."
After a pre-game dunk resulted in a Northridge technical foul, the contest started without a tip-off, but rather with Fremont at the foul line. Kade Criswell knocked down one of the attempts and along with a 3-pointer from Landon Scott, the Silver Wolves jumped out to a quick 4-0 lead, but the Knights battled back to take a 15-9 lead at the end of the first quarter and went into the half up 27-21.
With neither team listing anyone over 6-foot-3 on the roster, the game turned into a scrappy battle from the perimeter. Neither squad was effective within the three-point arc, with Fremont shooting just 7-for-30 and Northridge posting a 5-for-16 performance. But from deep both teams were dialed in as the Silver Wolves went 8-for-14 and Northridge converted ten of its 23 attempts.
Criswell and Scott each scored in double figures with 11 and 10 points respectively, while Bigler had 12 for Northridge with teammate Dallas Bond scoring nine.