The Valley Journals
MURRAY--The losses aside, Murray High’s boys and girls basketball teams will look back on the 2011-12 season as one to build on, and in some ways, recover from.
The Spartan boys finished 8-13 overall and 2-8 in Region 7, failing to make the playoffs after a semifinal appearance the previous season. Meanwhile, the Spartan girls went winless overall (0-21), including all 10 of their region games. Murray’s girls have now lost 25 consecutive games.
After starting the season 6-4, the Spartans faltered down the stretch, losing nine of their last 11 games. Still, Murray was in most games, being outscored by just two points on average (53-51). While the Spartans got production from several players each game, the big numbers were hard to find.
Murray lost to Herriman (56-45), Hillcrest (55-53) and Olympus (68-57) and defeated Westlake (54-52) in its final four region games. Orhan Agovic paced the Spartans with 14 points and five rebounds per game, while Nathan Aland averaged nine points and six rebounds, Dylan Ross eight points, Jackson Winget seven points, Nick Rush six points and five rebounds and Justin Adams three assists.
Agovic tallied 19 points and six rebounds in the loss to Herriman. Aland added eight points, Winget had seven, Adams five and Rush had four points, seven rebounds and seven assists. Herriman took control early with a 33-19 halftime lead. Murray staged a fourth-quarter comeback against Hillcrest, but came up just short. The Spartans trailed 41-29 before outscoring Hillcrest 24-14 in the fourth.
Chase Topham made five 3-pointers and had 17 points against Hillcrest, while Aland totaled 17 points and seven rebounds, Agovic had 11 points and four rebounds, Adams four rebounds and five assists and Rush had four points. Murray edged Westlake behind Agovic’s 15 points and six rebounds. Aland had 12 points and 13 rebounds, Ross had 12 points and Topham seven points and five rebounds.
The Spartans concluded the season with the loss to Olympus. Murray trailed 39-29 at halftime and 55-40 into the fourth quarter. Agovic had 13 points, Rush added 12, Winget eight, Aland seven, Riley Meyer six and Topham five for the Spartans.
Though the Spartans were winless, their final three games indicated marked improvement. Murray lost to Herriman and Hillcrest by a combined six points, and led Westlake by eight points after three quarters before being outscored 25-4 in the fourth quarter and overtime.
Irma Agovic made three 3-pointers in the fourth quarter in Murray’s 36-35 loss to Herriman. Alyse Horton, Kayla Durfey and Lexi Davies each added six points, while Christal Milne and Sofia Goeckeritz had four apiece. The game was tied 12-all at halftime before Herriman pulled ahead 27-17 after three quarters. Murray rallied behind an 18-9 fourth quarter.
Agovic tallied seven points in the 37-32 loss to Hillcrest, while Horton and Jordan Strah each had six points and Ashley Parker five. Hillcrest led 17-14 at halftime and 30-22 into the fourth quarter.
Milne erupted for 17 points in the 48-35 loss to Westlake, while Horton had eight points and Agovic six. Murray led 22-15 at halftime and 31-23 after three quarters before losing steam.
Horton paced the Spartans in scoring this season with six points per game. Goeckeritz averaged five points, Agovic four, and Durfey, Milne and Strah three apiece. Murray, which is 2-40 over the last two years, was outscored by an average of more than 20 points per game this season (49-28).