It’s finally state tournament season, and for the 16 teams in the tournament, it’s back to square one.
“We’ve obviously been getting them ready all year, so if we’re not ready to go by now, we’re in trouble,” Parowan head coach Lance Stubbs said. “We’re just trying to hopefully peak at the right time. Just watching a lot of film and just preparing for St. Joe right now.”
Parowan is one of the favorites to win the championship, along with fellow No. 1 seeds Rowland Hall and Layton Christian. Parowan breezed through Region 18 with an 11-1 record. The Rams are led by senior forward Porter Wood, who puts up 22.9 points per game. He’s the lone senior on a young team.
“Porter Wood is our only senior. He’s a beast, there’s no question about it. He’s a leader, always has the same look on his face, he doesn’t get rattled, he’s gamer. He’s just a real tough, tough kid for us. Once of the best basketball I’ve ever coached in this job,” Stubbs said.
Rowland Hall has seen success in new head coach Zack Alvidrez’s first year, going undefeated in Region 17 play. Alvidrez says that it’s back to fundamentals for the tournament.
“We’re starting all the way over, as if it’s 0-0. We’re not using anything we did in region to go into state. We’re starting over on a new season of 0-0, we’re treating Gunnison as 0-0 and literally getting back to basics, getting back to our fundamental mindset defensively, running the floor hard in transition, keeping it simple and executing on offense,” Alvidrez said.
Isaiah Adams is Rowland Hall’s leading scorer, averaging 14.3 points per game.
“Isaiah brings a quiet leadership, he brings dominance on the boards, he’s our defensive anchor, he communicates well with his teammates and helps guys getting in the right position. Offensively, he’s energetic, he moves well without the ball, finishes at the rim. Most importantly, defensively, he can guard 1-5,” Alvidrez said. “He’s been important for our success and he’s a great kid on and off the floor, so that obviously helps as well.”
Layton Christian went undefeated in Region 16 and boasts the best offense in 2A basketball. To prepare them for the tournament, the Eagles are going back to basics.
“We go back to square one. We work a lot on fundamentals. I tell them about the urgency of it. It’s one and done. You lose one game, it’s over with,” Layton Christian head coach Bobby Porter said.Comment on this story
Lino Saez averages 20.2 points per game to lead Layton Christian, and the Eagles boast four seniors. Porter hopes the experience pays off in the tournament.
“First of all, he’s a great young man. He brings energy, he brings leadership, he brings a personality that allows you to want to be around him every day and a great work ethic,” Porter said. “We have great leadership from our senior group. Michah Petty, Jesus Tomasi, Sam Muller. I have a great senior group that is showing great leadership.”