BOUNTIFUL — After being down by 10 points in the fourth quarter, Viewmont rallied back and, after a Bingham turnover and foul, the Vikings' Melissa Sorenson stepped to the line for two free throws with just seconds left in the game, her team down by one.
She sunk the first
Bingham called timeout, presumably to ice her.
“I thought about it. I knew there was so much pressure on me, but since I made the first one, it was a little less pressure,” Sorenson said. “I knew that I could do it because I just had confidence in myself and my team just backed me up, and coming out of the timeout, everyone’s like, ‘You got this. You got this,' and so my team had my back and they just gave me more confidence to step up and make it.”
Sorenson came back to the charity stripe and calmly made the second free throw to give Viewmont a 48-47 come-from-behind victory.
“I went to the line, the crowd was going nuts, and I just had to tune it all out,” Sorenson said. “I did the right form and they just went in.”
With seven seconds left in the contest, Sorenson inbounded to Mercedes Staples, then snuck around — unguarded — to the paint as Staples drove to the baseline. When Bingham’s defense collapsed on Staples, she passed to Sorenson, who was fouled putting up a shot.
“We had a good plan, it was to get whoever was open the ball, with Mercedes attacking like she does. They’ve (Bingham) been kind of leaving the other girls open and falling asleep, and we kind of had a feeling that that might be the case,” Viewmont head coach Clint Straatman said. “Mercedes is such a great player that she did whatever it took for the team to win, and that meant driving in there, bring all the people to her, dish it and it worked out perfectly.”
“I knew she was just going to the hole. I knew right when I passed it to her from the inbounds, just run down and get a rebound, because that’s all I could do. Just watch her, and if she passes it to me, then I know I’m open and I look to the basket, but if not, then she just drives and I go into finish if she doesn’t make it,” Sorenson added.
Staples led the Viewmont comeback, scoring a game-high 23 points in the victory, with 12 of those points coming in the fourth quarter.
“That’s why she’s the player of the year. There’s no doubt in my mind, and people that have seen her play — there’s a reason why Clemson is coming to get her. She’s going to Clemson on a full-ride (scholarship) and she’s legit. She’s a total team player,” Straatman said.
The contest started off slow, with Bingham taking a 21-20 advantage into the locker room at halftime. The Miners, who were led by 11 points from Maggie McCord and 10 points from Jaycee Lichtie, went on an 8-0 run out of halftime and led 34-31 at the end of the third. Bingham would continue to build that lead in the fourth quarter before Viewmont came back for the win.
“We just stayed with it, stayed with it, stayed with it. I just kept telling them, ‘You’re going to win this game, you’re going to win this game,’ and they just believed the whole way,” Straatman said.