Vail leads Blackfoot past Pocatello
BLACKFOOT — A long week came to end for the Blackfoot boys basketball team Saturday night with an important 4A District 5/6 match-up with Pocatello.
Playing their third game in four night's coming off Friday night's win over crosstown Snake River. Blackfoot head coach Dan Hale his kids were going to be tired and need to find a way to win an important game.
"I told the kids before the game that they did not realize that three games in four days is going to take a lot of energy out of you guys," Hale said. "Especially because we had a rivalry game the night before and we expounded a lot of energy and I knew tonight we would be a little flat and we did not have much of a crowd. So I told the boys you are going to have to create your own excitement."
The Broncos were listening.
Aaron Vail scored a game-high 22 points and Taylor Pearson added 14 as the Broncos overcame a three-point halftime deficit to run past Pocatello 60-45 and head into Christmas break on a two-game winning streak.
"In the first half I let the bench players play a lot of minutes because I wanted to have the number ones watch a little bit and get their bearings and figure out how to get into the game," Hale said. "I got them a little hard but they responded."
During the extended playing time the sophomore Pearson took over the second quarter.
Pearson scored the first 10 points of the second quarter on the way to his 14 doing not only from the low block, but with a 10-foot jump shot.
"Taylor played really well in the second quarter," Hale said. "And in the second half I saw we needed a double low and needed two guys in the post. So I said we were going to go down inside and slow down and finishes shots, and Aaron did that for us tonight."
Vail dominated the second half doing anything he earned against the Pocatello post players.
“This was a good end to a long week,” Hale said. “Know we can take some time off and get healthy and come back and keep improving and get ready for the rest of the season.”
Blackfoot (3-4,1-1 District 5/6) play again on Jan. 4 against Hillcrest.
Blackfoot 60, Pocatello 45
Pocatello 12 14 8 11 — 45
Blackfoot 10 13 18 19 — 60
Pocatello — Riley Whaley 4 202 11, Andrew Burtenshaw 3 1-1 8, Kobi Gardea 3 3-4 11, Joseph Pollard 1 0-0 2, Cade Pearson 1 3-4 5, Nicholas Musetti 1 0-0 3, Mitchell Nielson 1 0-0 3. Blackfoot — Aaron Vail 8 4-5 22, Andrew Hatch 1 0-0 2, Taylor Pearson 5 4-6 14, McKye Watt 1 0-0 3, Kaden Loveland 1 2-2 4, Harry Hoskins 1 0-0 3, Matt Peterson 1 0-1 2, Damon Bodkin 1 2-2 5, Tanner Norton 1 2-2 4, Si Hoskins 1 0-0 2.