RICHFIELD — Mission accomplished.
For the last year, the Enterprise girls' basketball team has had one purpose since losing to Beaver in the 2A state title game. The only way the Wolves could put the defeat behind them was to get back to the championship game and win it.
Enterprise reached its goal on Saturday, beating the Beavers 41-29 in the title rematch to capture its first state basketball championship since 1999.
"You just can't put this into words," said Enterprise forward Tressa Lyman, the Tournament MVP who scored 19 points in the championship game. "It's like the greatest feeling I've ever had. It's indescribable."
The victory felt so good because the Wolves avenged last year's loss to Beaver. It also helped make Enterprise's female athletes feel better after they lost to San Juan in the 2A championship volleyball game.
"After state last year taking second and in volleyball this year taking second, it was just motivation," Lyman said. "We were sick of taking second. We wanted to go all the way."
Enterprise capped an incredibly dominant season, finishing 24-1 with 23 of its victories coming by double digits. The Wolves were successful because of a stifling defense, and a superstar in Lyman leading the way.
The Wolves' defense enabled them to build a 19-10 halftime lead. They allowed Beaver to make just two baskets — layups by Lexi Moss — in the first half, and it looked like they were easily going to run away with the championship game.
Beaver, however, made a run spurred by Moss. She hit a 3-pointer in the final seconds of the third quarter to get the Beavers within striking distance at 25-20. She tied the game at 27-27 with another 3.
But that's when the Wolves turned up the heat again. Coach Brian Phelps pulled his down guard out of his 1-1-3 zone and had her chase Moss around. Beaver went scoreless from the time Moss made her 3-pointer to tie it at 27-27 with six minutes left until Shiloh White scored with two seconds left in the game.
Lyman made two foul shots the next time Enterprise had the ball to give the Wolves the lead for good, and Shalee Farnsworth hit a jumper to make it 31-27.
Lyman put the game away in the final minute. She had a steal and layup to put Enterprise ahead 36-27, and then blocked a 3-pointer attempt on the other end with 54.7 seconds left in the game.
"It was my last game as a senior, so I was going to give it everything I have because I wanted this so bad," Lyman said.2 comments on this story
Phelps said Lyman is a once-in-a-lifetime player.
"It's not just her physical abilities, it's also her mental abilities," Phelps said. "She's just a phenomenal player and a terrific kid."
Lyman started slowly on offense against the Beavers, but senior Jodi Williams kept the Wolves going until Lyman found her groove. Williams scored nine of her 13 points in first half.
2A All-Tournament Team
MVP: Tressa Lyman, Enterprise
Jodi Williams, Enterprise
Lexi Moss, Beaver
Krystyn Stevens, Millard
Kelsi Meyer, San Juan
Calli Jackson, Kanab