Lone Peak boys basketball can’t keep pace with Corner Canyon, loses in 6A semifinals
Like a pair of thoroughbreds, the Lone Peak and Corner Canyon boys basketball teams found themselves neck and neck at the quarter pole of Thursday’s 6A state semifinal game at the Dee Events Center in Ogden.
Thanks to a big quarter from sophomore Isaac Staley, the No. 4-seeded Knights nosed in front around the first turn and seemed to be in good position to give the top-seeded Chargers a run for their money.
But Corner Canyon then kicked it into high gear down the backstretch and Lone Peak simply couldn’t keep up.
The Chargers used a big second quarter to take control, then had an answer for every Knight push as Corner Canyon pulled away to get the 72-54 win and eliminate Lone Peak.
“That’s a really good team,” Lone Peak head coach Rob Ross said. “They do a lot of things really well, but first and foremost they just beat us up on the boards. They’re just really good at rebounding and they get multiple shots. Then they end up taking advantage of those opportunities when they get them and that makes it tough.”
The Knights led 10-6, 17-14 and then — thanks to a Staley 3-pointer with the clock winding down — 20-19 at the end of the first quarter.
But the rest of the first half was a different story.
The Chargers shut down the Lone Peak offense while scoring 18 of the next 20 points to build a double-digit lead at halftime.
“It’s tough,” Ross said. “We tried different things against them but they’re really experienced and they’re really skilled. They have all the things you need on a team to be successful and they’re just good at taking advantage of their advantages.”
The Knights stayed just close enough to be within striking distance for most of the third quarter, then started the final frame with a push to get within 13 points.
But that would be as close as Lone Peak would get as Corner Canyon went on an 11-2 run to end the threat.
Staley ended up leading the way for the Knights with 17 points, 13 of which came in the first quarter. Lone Peak got nine points, four assists and four rebounds from junior Thomson Kramer, while sophomore Chamberlain Burgess scored eight points and had six rebounds.
The Chargers were led by 26 points and 10 rebounds from Brody Kozlowski, while Jaxson Roberts put in 19 points and Max Toombs added 16.
Although the loss stings, Ross hopes his underclassmen learn some lessons they can apply in the future.
“There are two things I want us to take from this game,” Ross said. “We need to be tougher, both physically and mentally, and we need to keep our composure when things get a little crazy on us. But overall, I’m so proud of these guys because they did a lot of things that nobody expected that they would do.”
He credited his senior class for making the 2022-23 season a fantastic one.
“This has been such a fun year for me,” Ross said. “These kids have bought in and done everything we’ve asked them to do. They are great leaders for themselves and their teammates. I couldn’t be more proud of them. They are such good kids and good basketball players. I’m sad to see them go.”
Corner Canyon advanced to the 6A title game at the Dee Events Center in Ogden on Saturday at 4 p.m. where they will play the winner of the late semifinal game between No. 2-seed Cyprus and No. 3-seed American Fork.
Lone Peak (54)
Staley 17, Swiggett 2, Fotheringham 4, Kramer 9, Burgess 8, Best 5, Taylor 5, Suarez 4. Totals 20 9-13 54.
Corner Canyon (72)
Roberts 19, Feroah 3, Lewis 6, Kozlowski 26, Toombs 16, Neibaur 2. Totals 28 7-12 72.
Lone Peak 20 5 12 17 — 54
Corner Canyon 19 18 19 16 — 72
3-pointer: Lone Peak 5 (Staley 3, Kramer, Taylor); Corner Canyon 9 (Kozlowski 4, Toombs 2, Feroah, Lewis, Toombs).