They tried to just make other guys step up and shoot it, and that’s been the beauty of our team is any given night other guys got to step up and shoot it. —Olympus head coach Matt Barnes
OGDEN — From the Olympus student section, eight rows deep, a chant rang out.
It was chanted 12 times, after each Olympus 3-pointer, on Monday night as Olympus rolled in an 86-59 win over Brighton to open the 5A state tournament at the Dee Events Center.
“Spence Jones was terrific, Spence got a lot of open shots and he shot it great, I think he was eight for eight in the first half, finished nine for nine, 100 percent from the floor. Harrison (Creer) took over in the fourth quarter in the high post and got some easy baskets for us,” Olympus head coach Matt Barnes said.
Spencer Jones and Harrison Creer combined for 48 points in the win, scoring 24 each.
“They tried to just make other guys step up and shoot it, and that’s been the beauty of our team is any given night other guys got to step up and shoot it. Some nights it’s your night, other nights it’s finding guys, and that’s what we did, we really did a nice job at finding Spence and got it going,” Barnes said.
“It was a fun game. They did a triangle-two (defense) and from experience, we’ve had a lot of teams play that, so I knew that I was going to get my shots up, so I just made the most of it,” Jones said.
Brighton led for the first minute and 22 seconds of the contest, but it would be its only lead of the contest as Olympus started clicking. Cam Krystkowiak scored 22 and Dallin Ringwood added 16 to lead Brighton.
The Bengals scored 59 points, but their defense couldn’t contain the Titans’ potent scoring attack for the entire game.
After Olympus got going, Barnes was proud of his team’s defensive effort in the tournament opener.
“I thought we were gassed a little bit and we gave up so many easy baskets on the press, it was a Monday game, the first game of the tournament, and I think the adrenaline wears off you. We were dragging a little bit, but then we got our second wind and kind of got it going,” Barnes said. “The key, obviously, for us is that we’ve got to play D. Our defense leads to our offense and we’ve got to get stops. It was a physical game, a rough game, they were tough on the boards and knocked us around, but we kind of found our way there.”
The Titans continued their perfect 2017-18 campaign and showed that they’re back for revenge in the 2018 5A state tournament after falling in double overtime to Springville in the 4A state championship game last season.
“It’s a cliché, we’re just taking it one game at a time and enjoying the ride. It’s hard to run the table, for sure, but we’ve had the target on our back early and the more you win, the more excited people get to want to beat you. We’ve just got to keep our mindset, keep our focus and continue to do what we’ve been doing all year — play as a team and go to work on the D side, and see where it goes,” Barnes said.