Highland Rams Pull-Off Big Upset

Bronson+Olevao+lays+the+ball+up.
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Highland Rams Pull-Off Big Upset

Bronson Olevao lays the ball up.

Bronson Olevao lays the ball up.

Bronson Olevao lays the ball up.

Bronson Olevao lays the ball up.

Will Olsen, Sports Editor

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On Friday February 26th the Highland Rams played in their first playoff game of the year. Highland ended region play as the four seed from region 6 this meant that they were matched up against the Bountiful Braves who are the one seed from region 5. Highland came into the game as underdogs but they didn’t let that affect them as they won 71-60 and are moving on to the next round.

In the first quarter both teams started off slow both of them being scoreless for the first two minutes. Then Bountiful made their run they went up 7-0 very quickly shutting down everything that Highland was doing. This quarter ended in a 7 point Bountiful lead winning 15-8 at the finish. This was not looking good for the low seeded Highland to already be down 7 but they weren’t even close to being done yet because they were prepared for this team.

“We approached this game with a lot of preparation,” Senior Jackson Hawes said. “Practices were ramped up, and our scout team did an amazing job mimicking Bountiful’s personnel and player tendencies so props to them.”

The second quarter they came out and really showed that they were there to win. They were scoring more reliably and still able to stop Bountiful’s offense enough to out score them. At the end of the quarter it seemed like Highland was going to be going into the half with a very little deficit to overcome, but a late three from Nate Warr made it so they were up 32-31 at half.

Anyone watching could tell these teams were very competitive and it wasn’t going to be easy for either team. This was shown in the third as both teams played amazing defense stopping the other offense almost every time down the floor. This quarter ended and Highland was clinging on to that one point lead 45-44.

The start of the fourth quarter came and it looked like it was going to be to close to call as each team was going on mini scoring runs neither ever being able to pull away from the other. This was constant until about the fifth minute of the fourth quarter when Highland started converting on a lot of their opportunities to score the ball. This led to Highland growing their lead to 7 points and it wouldn’t be close again as they did not allow Bountiful to get back in it. Bountiful was forced to foul to stop the clock and Highland shot a very high percentage from the foul line to finish the game up 71-60.

Highland has a rough road ahead of the if they want to make a deep playoff run they are going to need a lot more upsets, starting on Thursday against the Corner Canyon Chargers who are the 2 seed from region 7. Highland can take comfort in knowing they have what it takes to pull of an upset, but they are going to need the same intensity and performance for the rest of the tournament.

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