With some region schedules well under way and others about to begin, here's a check-in with boys high school basketball along Northern Utah.
Don’t let the Fremont’s lack of post play fool you because the Silver Wolves can score and defend very well. Dallin Hall and Baylor Harrop average a combined 37.8 points per game. The team that presents the biggest matchup problem is Layton, probably because nobody has the personnel to defend a 6-foot-10 center, a 6-foot-7 forward and two high-scoring guards. The Lancers are quietly starting to get rolling.
Davis rounds out the group of probable region title contenders. The Darts have the scoring capability (inside and outside) to catch anyone on any night.
If the race for the fourth seed turns into a Weber/Northridge battle, then circle both matchups on the calendar because Hudson Schenck vs. Alec Duffin is the local equivalent of appointment TV. The Warriors got center Braedon Iverson back from what was initially thought to be a season-ending knee injury.
Clearfield’s chances have been helped massively by senior forward Riley Cearley returning (he has 53 rebounds in five games this year). Syracuse has a balanced lineup, which can only help the Titans as it prevents other teams from focusing on just one player.
Fremont (2-0, 8-4)
Layton (1-0, 4-6)
Davis (1-1, 7-6)
Northridge (1-1, 6-7)
Syracuse (1-1, 5-8)
Weber (0-1, 6-4)
Clearfield (0-2, 4-7)
Suddenly, Feb. 6 and Feb. 20 have become circled in three layers in red pen instead of the normal two. Woods Cross vs. Bountiful is usually a lively rivalry game but the way they looked in non-region games, there may be region title hopes at stake in that game, even more so now with a ton of chaos elsewhere in the region. The Wildcats have been the surprise of the area, with a 3-1 record against Region 1 teams and a nine-point win over Skyridge. Bountiful loaded up in non-region play with a tournament against some of Utah’s best and a tournament in Southern California where the Braves went 1-3. The record may be deceiving; they’re very battle tested and one of the best teams around.
Farmington’s first season is off to a nice start at 7-6, but something to keep an eye on is the Phoenix’s 4-0 record in games decided by five points or less.
On the other side of the coin, Roy head coach Terry Schriver resigned Monday after being reinstated following an investigation into a song played in the locker room after a win. Assistant coach Jeff Giles also resigned Monday. Leading scorer Kobe Schriver curiously wasn’t listed in the team’s scorebook for Tuesday's game against Taylorsville.
Tyson Madson is “no longer with” the Box Elder basketball team which is struggling out of the gate. It’s a product of both youth and the absence of the leading returning scorer — Madson, who was averaging 19.7 points and 8.3 rebounds the first three games. But sophomore Parker Buchanan averages 17.9 points and 6.9 rebounds, so there's reason for optimism.
Viewmont’s roster was — you guessed it — affected by Farmington opening and the Vikings have taken a few on the chin. Granted, the schedule they’ve played has been among the toughest in the state. Expect Viewmont to look much better once region games roll around.
Woods Cross (9-2)
Box Elder (2-8)
Bonneville’s combo of experience, size and speed means the Lakers will be right in the chase for the playoffs, regardless of the region-opening loss to Tooele. It’s been several years since the Lakers have made a playoff run and their window is open right now.
Ben Lomond has a stable of wings that should make the Scots more competitive than last year. They’ve already shown it with one of their best starts to a season recently, a start that includes an 11-point win over Ogden. Speaking of the Tigers, they’re going through coaching transitional growing pains and this might be a tough rest of the year for them. They’re got a lot of youth, but they’re fast and exciting to watch.
In the rest of the region, Juan Diego is the prohibitive favorite by virtue of winning the title last year and its fantastic non-region performance. Park City is much-improved, Tooele shoots free throws at a crazy rate and, by the transitive property, is in line for the No. 2 seed. Stansbury, which beat Ogden by 31, wasn’t looking good at first but it seems like the Stallions are going to be a tough out in region games.
Tooele (1-0, 6-6)
Park City (1-0, 4-6)
Stansbury (1-1, 4-8)
Bonneville (1-1, 7-4)
Ben Lomond (1-1, 6-5)
Juan Diego (0-0, 10-1)
Ogden (0-2, 3-8)
Regions 12 & 13
We know the Bears (11-3) can shoot the lights out of the ball. The big test will be whether or not they can do that well enough to negate the size disadvantages they’ll face in region games. Bear River might be the most fun team around to watch in person. The Bears shoot 50 percent from the field and 44 percent (!) from 3-point range.
Region 12 is brutal this year. Two teams have Division I basketball commits (Sky View's Mason Falslev with Utah and Ridgeline's Landon Brenchley with Utah State). Green Canyon is good enough to compete in a 5A region and Logan and Mountain Crest’s combined 8-15 non-region record isn’t close to indicative of what kinds of teams they are.
As the defending region champion, Morgan’s going to get everyone’s best effort. But the Trojans are still pretty good at 8-4. They have a few wins over higher-classification programs, shoot 46 percent from the field and lead the region with 31.4 rebounds per game. Trey Miles (17.7 points, 5.9 rebounds) is the player teams will key on but four more players average between 8-10.4 points per game, too. Judge Memorial looks the best so far of the other region teams.
This is still Layton Christian’s region to lose. The Eagles’ (7-6) quartet of Lino Saez, Micah Petty, Jesus Tomasi and Sam Muller is potent.
The addition of Sayveon Armstrong to St. Joseph (6-7) and how the junior guard has been playing certainly helps the Jayhawks’ playoff chances. Utah Military Academy’s (1-8) losses have all been by double digits as it goes through its third coach in three years of competition.