You could say that Jordan's 70-60 victory over Emery County in Saturday night's championship game of the 3A girls prep basketball state tournament had a historical flavor.
First historical point - it was the Beetdiggers' first-ever title in the 16 seasons of girls basketball competition.Second historical point - Jordan was guided by first-year coach Tim Lewis, the former Timpview boys coach who had lead the T-birds to a 3A boys basketball championship in 1988. That crown, coupled with Jordan's title- winning efforts Saturday night at Murray High, made Lewis the first coach to earn state championships in both the boys and girls divisions.
And third historical point - Jordan won it with a defensive scheme that Lewis had picked up some 20 years ago as an assistant to legendary Provo boys coach Jim Spencer. "The defense was the difference," said Lewis, complimenting his players for learning the intricate system within a system and peaking with the process during the 3A playoffs.
But it wasn't all defense - especially since Jordan's Marti Callister finished with a game-high 39 points while going inside against too-tall Spartan foes like Marci Stilson, Stephanie Snow and Tasha Bradley.
After her 39-point performance, Callister admitted that the plan was to take the ball into the low post and head inside. Beside Callister's points, the plan of attack also kept the Spartans in foul trouble most of the game.
Emery seemed like it would dominate early, picking up a total of six offensive rebounds on its first two possessions of the game. However, the Beetdiggers eventually took control and finished the first with a 17-14 lead.
A 6-0 Spartan spurt with two minutes to go until intermission drew Emery to within 30-26, but Callister scored the final two baskets of the half for Jordan, with her 15 points in the quarter giving her 21 total in the half.
Stilson scored eight of Emery's first 12 points of the second half while the Spartans stayed close. But Kristy Deem's two technical free throws gave Jordan a 49-42 lead late in the third period and the 'Diggers survived a 6-0 Bradley-sparked surge midway in the fourth for the win.
Besides Callister's score-o-rama effort, freshman Nikki Epperson added 15 points and Deem 14. Stilson led Emery with 16 points.
Pine View 68, Bear River 66: The third-place Panthers battled back from a two-point deficit to start the final quarter, as Nikki Shaheen scored 20 points and Vickie Larson 12. Shana Stevens paced Bear River with 22.
Uintah 39, Ogden 29: The Lady Utes jumped out to a 15-7 lead after the first period and held the Tigers to single-digit scoring in the second and fourth quarters as well. Linda Emmett scored 11 for fifth-place Uintah, while Daylyn Thompson's team-high 11 for Ogden included a trio of treys.
Bountiful 51, Judge 45: The Braves used a key 14-5 advantage in the third quarter for the victory, as Nikki Hanni finished with a game-high 24 points for sixth-place Bountiful. Joann Jorgensen scored 20 for Judge.