There’s something about playing Timpanogos that pushes Orem junior Tori Hollingshead into beast mode.
Hollingshead scored 24 points, grabbed 12 rebounds and blocked six shots as the No. 11 Tigers routed the No. 22 Timberwolves 50-28 on Tuesday in the first round of the Class 5A Tournament.
The two Region 7 foes had played twice before with similar results from the 6-foot-2 Hollingshead: She scored 31 points and had 24 rebounds in a 45-37 win on Jan. 9 and 28 points in a 53-42 victory just five days ago.
“I was actually going to play for Timpanogos before I decided to go to Orem,” Hollingshead said. “Every time we play then I get hyped, like ‘I’m going to show you why I didn’t play for you.’ I know a lot of those girls and they are good friends, so it’s more fun for me to play against them.”
Hollingshead scored 17 points in the second half as turned a 22-9 halftime lead into a blowout.
“She’s a beast every night,” first-year Orem coach Nick Taylor said. “It’s nice to have a Tori on your team, someone who can score 30 points or grab 20 rebounds and really control the key. She loves playing against anybody and she puts up good numbers pretty regularly like this, but this team in particular for some reason, she likes taking it to them. Even when they double teamed her she was able to take advantage of that and just fight.”
Orem sophomore guard Bricia Hendry scored nine points in the first half and the Tigers held Timpanogos to just three field goals to take a 13-point halftime lead. Hollingshead got the ball in deep consistently in the third quarter and scored 10 points as the Tiger outscored the visitors 12-3, pushing their advantage to 22 points, 34-12, heading into the fourth quarter.
Hollingshead scored seven more points to open the final eight minutes before Taylor cleared him bench with a 46-14 lead with 3:19 to play.
“We came out with a lot of energy,” Taylor said. “We focused on the things that we needed to focus on that we do well. We didn’t worry about what the other team was doing, we just came out and played our game and really put forth our best effort.”
Timpanogos (9-13) got seven points off the bench from Marissa Chapman and a pair of 3-pointers from freshman guard Summer Christensen.
Orem — which won just four games last season — also got 14 points from Hendry. The Tigers (14-10) advance to the second round on Thursday at No. 6 seed Salem Hills, a 56-39 winner over Park City in the first round.
“I believed we could do this and I believe we can keep going further,” Hollingshead said. “We have a good. Our coach has definitely brought our team up and we all appreciate him a lot. It’s amazing to see how far we have have gotten in a year. It’s been amazing and it’s a great experience.”