Panguitch's Henry James made some big plays in Friday's 56-55 victory over the defeding 1A state champion Tabiona Tigers, but none was bigger than getting out of the way of a semi-truck that clipped the back of the Panguitch bus on I-15 90 minutes before game time.

"It happened quick," James said of the bus accident caused by heavy snow that hit the Cedar City area earlier in the afternoon. "The bus slowed down and I didn't know why. I looked out the window and saw a diesel coming to where I was sitting. I jumped out of the way and boom, glass was everywhere."Along with scoring four points in the fourth, two of which tied the game at 44-44, James had a huge rebound with 22 seconds left with the Bobcats leading 55-53 and a steal with 14 seconds left to preserve the Bobcat victory.

The Bobcats, who won their last title in 1990, will face Rich, which beat Milford 57-53, tonight at 5 p.m. for the 1A crown.

"I don't want this to be anti-climatic (the title game Saturday). We will come out and play," Panguitch coach Scott Hunt said.

Along with James' play, Hunt said the Bobcats' ability to neutralize Tabiona's Levi Gines, who scored 30 points the night before, was critical.

"We wanted to double-team him and get him out of his rythym, and make him work," he said. Gines finished with 16 points.

Behind Gines' seven first-quarter points, the Tigers led 16-10 after one. Gines added a 3-pointer, four foul shots and another jumper in the second quarter as the Tigers balloned to the 33-23 halftime lead.

After halftime Panguitch made the ajustments for Gines and mounted its comeback.

"They bottled him up," Tabiona coach Lee Gines said. "Their pressure was good and we didn't handle it very well."

Sonny Orton led Pangutich with 16 points, while Nate Moore, Henry and Miller had 14, 13, and 11 points, respectivley. Jeremy Stringham led Tabiona with a game-high 19 points, 17 of which came in the second half.

In other championship action:

RICH 57, MILFORD 53: Wade Cornia scored a game-high 23 points, 21 in the second half, 17 in the fourth quarter, to lead the Rich Rebels to its first-ever state title game. Craig Barnes led Milford with 15 points.

Consolation games

WAYNE 51, DUGWAY 32: Wayne, who had 11 players score, was led by Craig Lange's 14 points as the Badgers eliminated Dugway. Aaron Hoody led the Mustangs with 11 points.

PIUTE 71, WENDOVER 63: Piute had four players in double-figures led by Dusty Esplin's 19 points (on four 3-pointers) in the victory over the Wildcats. Wendover's Sloan Sweat had a game-hgih 20 points.

WATERFORD 59, MANILA 54: Jerred Burton scored a game-high 20 points and teammate Jeremy Pendleton added 16 as the Wolves staved off elimination. John Catron had 12 points for Manila.

GREEN RIVER 54, VALLEY 49: Green River broke open a close game by allowing just six fourth-quarter points to the Buffaloes. Dane Johnson led the Pirates with 14 points, while Nathan Hoyt had 17 points for Valley.



State tourneys


Today at the Huntsman Center

Championship game

Orem (16-7) vs. Mtn. View (17-6), 8:30 p.m.

Third-fourth place game

Layton (19-4) vs. Brighton (12-11), 3 p.m.

Fifth-sixth place game

West Jordan (14-9) vs. Davis (15-7), 1:20 p.m.


Today at the Huntsman Center

Championship game

Provo (21-2) vs. Mtn. Crest (19-4), 6 p.m.

Third-fourth place game

Olympus (21-2) vs. Bountiful (14-9), 11:40 a.m.

Fifth-sixth place game

Weber (16-7) vs. Timpview (17-6), 10 a.m.


Thursday at SUU


Beaver vs. Gunnison, 10 a.m.

Kanab/Duchesne vs. Juab 11:30 a.m.

Grantsville vs. Enterprise/Grand, 1 p.m.

South Summit/North Sevier vs. San Juan/North Summit, 2:30 p.m.

Friday's first-round games

Grantsville 72, South Sevier 37

Beaver 50, Manti 44

Juab 92, Millard 66Gunnison def. AltamontSaturday's first-round games

North Summit (6-15) at San Juan (13-7), 3 p.m.

Kanab (13-8) at Duchesne (10-10), 7 p.m.

Grand (7-13) at Enterprise (13-8), 7:30 p.m.


At SUU's Centrum

Saturday's championship

Panguitch vs. Rich, 5 p.m.

Third-fourth place game

Tabiona vs. Milford, 3 p.m.

Fifth-seventh place game

Piute vs. Wayne, noon

Sixth-eighth place game

Green River vs. Waterford, 1:30 p.m.

Friday's semifinals

Panguitch 56, Tabiona 55Rich 57, Milford 53Friday's consolation

Wayne 51, Dugway 32

Waterford 59, Manila 54Green River 54, Valley 49Piute 71, Wendover 63


Thursday at SUU


Beaver vs. Altamont, 4:30 p.m.

Monticello/North Sevier vs. Grantsville/Millard, 6 p.m.

Juab vs. Enterprise/Duchesne, 7:30 p.m.

Parawon/Rowland Hall vs. San Juan/Manti, 9 p.m.

Thursday's first-round game

Millard 44, Grantsville 34

Friday's first-round games

Altamont 49, S. Summit 39

Juab 73, South Sevier 51

Beaver 84, North Summit 33Saturday's first-round games

N. Sevier (13-8) at Monticello (8-8), 7 p.m.

Duchesne (8-11) at Enterprise (13-7), 7 p.m.

Rowland Hall (10-11) vs. Parowan (13-8) at Juab, 7

Manti (8-11) at San Juan (12-9), 7 p.m.