Prep basketball: Knights down Darts in key Region 1 battle

Jan 31 2012 - 11:48pm

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(NICHOLAS DRANEY/Standard-Examiner)
Northridge's Zach Hayes (4) makes a pass around Davis' Braden Koelliker (32) in Layton on Tuesday, Jan. 31, 2012.
(NICHOLAS DRANEY/Standard-Examiner)
Northridge's Zach Hayes (4) makes a pass around Davis' Braden Koelliker (32) in Layton on Tuesday, Jan. 31, 2012.

LAYTON -- It is sometimes difficult to tell the flavor of a game by the final score.

Such was the case Tuesday evening when Northridge and Davis went into the fourth quarter tied at 28 before the Knights stepped up their defense and made some key free throws down the stretch to taste victory in a 47-38 battle, staying tied with Fremont for first place in Region 1.

Northridge (9-7 overall, 4-1 league) sprinkled in an occasional basket with 11-of-12 from the charity stripe in the period, while Davis was only 7-of-16 for the game, with several misses on the front end of one-and ones.

The Knights led by two at the end of the first and second stanzas, before the third quarter tie, then won it going away with a 19-10 edge over the final eight minutes.

"Every game in this region seems to go down to the wire," said Northridge coach Chad Sims. "We played a tough pre-season, including that tournament up in Gillette (Wyoming). Our kids have been in tough positions, so it doesn't rattle them because they've been there before."

Davis out-rebounded the Knights 20-10 at the break (but still trailed 24-22), however Northridge came back in in the second half to close the gap on the boards to 30-28 for the game.

"We knew how long Davis was, so that was a point of emphasis (rebounds); we just didn't do a good job in the first half," Sims said. "We made it a focus in the second half, to hold them to one shot. I was just proud of how the kids executed on the offensive end and then got some rebounds on defense."

Morgan Berg and Joe Newkirk led the Knights with 11 points and four rebounds each, while Preston Christensen checked in with 10 points and four boards.

Tyson Denney and Braden Koelliker led an anemic Davis (10-6, 3-2) attack with eight points each, as the Darts only shot 31.7 percent (13-of-41) from the field on the night.

Sims was an assistant coach at Davis last year, but said it didn't give him an advantage in the game.

"It made it harder. I really like their kids. What we do here is a lot like what they do there. I learned a lot from a great coach (Jay Welk) about how to do things the right way," Sims added.

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