Panthers use big first quarter to take down Diggers 55-45
THOMAS — When the Snake River and Sugar-Salem boys basketball teams met over Christmas break in Sugar City it took two overtimes and missed free throw in the final seconds for the Panthers to escape with a one-point win.
The two teams met again Saturday night in front of a packed house in Thomas, and after one quarter it was clear the home team was out to make sure they result from the first meeting would not be the same this time.
Snake River dominated the opening eight minutes building a 16-2 lead and finishing the game going 7-for-8 from the foul line to earn a 55-45 victory.
"At the end of the game our plan was to get the ball into Brad's (Coombs) hands," Snake River head coach Bob Coombs said. "That's who we wanted on the line."
Coming into the final 1:27 of the fourth quarter the Panthers were 2-of-8 from the foul line including missing a string of five straight foul shots.
During that time the Diggers cut the deficit down to as low as eight points after a couple of threes by Gunner Anderson.
But every time the Diggers cut it down, the Panthers made them pay for fouling at the free throw line with Coombs going 5-of-6 down the stretch to seal the win.
"You can't key on any one person because I have a lot of kids that can step up at any given night and score," Coombs said. "Friday night Trey Albertson was the leading scorer. Tonight it was Brad Coombs."
Coombs finished the night with 14 points.
Prior to the game the Panthers knew they were going to have to find a way to slow down the Diggers Anderson who is the teams best three point shooter and the 6-foot-8 Tim Fuller.
It took 4:30 for the Diggers to get on the board when Fuller put in a layup, it would take over nine minutes for the Diggers to get another basket when a second Fuller layup got the Diggers on the board again.
During the drought Panthers did whatever they wanted to against the Diggers defense.
After a Kade Harral three-pointer easy in the second quarter the Panthers led 22-2, but the Diggers played the remainder of the game right with Snake River, but the 14-point first quarter hole was too much to comeback from.
Fuller led all scorers with a game-high 16, Harral finished the night with 11 points, Curtis and Kade Keller each added nine.
Snake River (9-1) plays at South Fremont on Thursday.
Snake River 55, Sugar-Salem 45
Sugar-Salem 2 13 11 19 — 45
Snake River 16 13 11 15 — 55
Sugar-Salem — Tim Fuller 6 4-5 16, Gunner Anderson 5 0-1 13, Ryan Hawkes 0 1-2 1, Josh Shirley 2 0-1 5, Connor Stoddard 1 1-1 3, Drake Cordon 1 0-0 2, Cyrus Kidd 2 0-0 5. Snake River — Curtis Keller 4 1-2 9, Kade Keller 3 2-7 9, Klay Keller1 0-0 2, Brad Coombs 2 10-11 14, Trey Albertson 1 5-7 7, Tyler Coombs 1 0-2 3, Kade Harral 4 1-1 11.