Bears basketball comes out of hibernation
Summit Academy High School in Bluffdale began its first official season of varsity basketball this year. The girls and boys teams are figuring out their identities and making a mark on Utah high school basketball.
“We have had some great wins. Our team is starting to come together, and it feels beautiful,” girls head coach Tammy Harter said.
Harter and boys coach Evric Gray both scheduled preseason games that were more challenging, hoping to improve their teams.
The Bears girls team lost to Jordan 46-37 and Juan Diego 52-23.
The boys entered the Jordan Holiday tournament against much larger schools like Jordan, Cyprus, Hunter and Taylorsville. They lost all four games by a combined 88 points.
“In preseason we played some tough bigger schools, and it really prepared us for our region opponents,” Gray said.
The coach’s plan worked. The lady Bears have compiled a 6-2 record, while the boys team is 7-1 in region play.
The boys leading scorer is Rashan Friffin. He averages 15 points per game. In the 79-56 win over Waterford, he scored 33 points.
“Rashann is one of our leaders; he and Kennedy Alder carry this team. The rest of the team really looks up to those guys,” Gray said
Mckenzie Parker and Alyssa Richards each average eight points per game for the girls.
“Alyssa is a strong ball handler and three-point shooter. As she has started to play better, so has our team,” Harter said.
The Lady Bears have only two seniors on their roster. Harter expects these younger players to continue to improve.
“The opportunity for these kids is great. As a first-year varsity team, for us to have a chance to make the state tournament is really exciting,” she said.
The Bears boys and girls basketball teams compete in the 2A division, Region 14. The other schools in their region include Maser Prep, South Summit, North Summit, Rowland Hall and Waterford.
“Our school is smaller, but I have met some great friends. Coach lets us get out and run. I think people should not underestimate us. We have some good players,” senior Ashton Richards said.
The boys and girls state playoffs begin Friday and Saturday, Feb. 15 and 16 at Orem High School and continue Thursday Feb. 21-23 at Southern Utah University in Cedar City.