KAYSVILLE -- There were few ups and downs for the Darts during a fifth consecutive Region 1 title run, which gives them a 64-4 league record dating back to the 2005-06 season.
Despite losing its top seven players from the 2008-09 season -- a 19-5 overall mark and a state 5-A semifinal-round appearance -- league co-champion Davis High (15-1) tangled with Region 4 champion Alta for the 5-A basketball championship March 6 in Weber State University's Dee Events Center.
Without guys who had been through it before, the Darts were hungry to win their first state 5-A title since 2002 on the same Dee Center floor.
In a rematch of the season opener -- Davis won by seven points at home -- the Darts shot a season-low 18.6 percent (8-of-43) and fell to the Hawks 46-32.
"I try to forget about it, and when I do start thinking about it, it hurts," Davis center Tallon Burton said. "When people bring it up, it's a touchy subject. I can deal with it better now than I did at the time.
"Looking back, we had it within our grasp and let it slip away," he said. "It's not the best feeling in the world. We believed in ourselves, we liked each other and we weren't selfish."
And you don't win 22 games without doing something right.
"The seniors that played together have always been winners," the 17-year-old Burton said. "It wasn't a surprise to me that we were able to do what we did. Making the finals was a big deal. People didn't think we were supposed to even be there. There were more doubters than supporters.
"We got off to a slow start and our shooting wasn't there," he said. "One of Landon's (Horne) layups just hung on the rim forever, and that kind of summed things up on how things weren't falling for us. Alta dropped back defensively and compacted the middle because we weren't hitting anything."
The 6-foot-3 Burton averaged 10.8 points and 7.4 rebounds with five double-doubles in being selected the 2009-10 Standard-Examiner All-Area Boys Basketball Team most valuable player.
"Tallon was always going against bigger guys and finding ways to score," Davis coach Jay Welk said. "The success he enjoyed in football helped our team. Tallon was not intimidated by things, having been through it in football.
"He was not a rah-rah type guy, but Tallon would offer encouragement if needed," Welk said. "He did a lot of the little things; I liked his consistency. You could count on him for rebounding. Tallon was the consummate team guy. He was a well-rounded player and was a good passer."
"I wanted to do it all -- score and rebound," Burton said. "I didn't need to be the leading scorer, but if they needed me to score, I would."
He was a double-figure scorer in 15 of Davis' 25 games.
"I wanted to be the leading rebounder," Burton said. "It was all heart and I didn't want my guy to get it. I took a lot of pride in rebounding. To me, double-digit rebounds were better than double-digit points.
"It wasn't hard for us to score," he said. "If we saw somebody with a better shot, we gave it to them. I was playing just to play, and I didn't realize the finality of it. I didn't think I would be in the finals in both sports."
The Darts fell to Bingham 35-24 in the 5-A football championship game on Nov. 20, 2009, in Utah's Rice-Eccles Stadium.
"It was definitely a treat to make the finals in two sports, so I'm happy with that," Burton said.
He was an outside linebacker on Davis' 10-3 football team, which swept the Region 1 title with a 7-1 record.
"We weren't in as good of basketball condition at the beginning of the season," Burton said. "I got a thigh contusion in the Bingham game on its last touchdown drive. I didn't practice the first week of the season, and only practiced two days before the Alta game (Dec. 1, 2009).
"I wasn't in basketball shape and wasn't in basketball mode yet, but as soon as the games came I was ready to go," he said. "Winning the Region 1 title was one of the team's goals -- that should be every team's goal -- and we talked about it often.
"Winning Region 1 gave us confidence going into the state 5-A tournament," Burton said. "Coach Welk always told us we were crazy if we didn't think we could win the championship. Football is more physically tough, and after basketball you're not as drained as you are for football.
"Basketball is mentally tougher," he said. "Everything is closer, and I didn't let my mind run me. I tried to stay the same the whole game, not too up or down."
Burton is anxiously awaiting his last two weeks of high school.
"I couldn't be happier to be graduating from school," he said. "This school year went by so fast; I would do it again in a heartbeat. The bond you have with your teammates you can't describe.
"I have no regrets at all," Burton said. "We went out and tried our hardest. We played our butts off every time, and most of the time the outcome was good."