According to head coach Conrad Yanito, the Thunderbird seventh-graders defeated Green River by the score of 82-18 on Dec. 12, and won a 72-13 contest against Mont Harmon Junior High on Dec. 18.
Cameron Hoppendsteadt led Grand with 19 points against Green River, while teammate Teddy Park added 13. In the Mont Harmon game, Teddy Park led the team with 18 points while his twin brother Kevin Park added 12.
The GCMS eighth-graders then took on Mont Harmon’s older team, which was comprised of eighth- and ninth-graders. Grand won that contest by the score of 40-37 in overtime. Josh Jones was the Thunderbirds’ leading scorer with 23 points.
Defense was the key to both wins against Mont Harmon, Yanito said.
“We gained some experience playing a larger school and playing against a zone defense,” he said. “Our seventh-grade boys did well breaking down their zone, and managed to find open shots. Our pressure defense is where the majority of our points came from.”
Noting that the eighth-graders hadn’t played a game in more than three weeks prior to heading into the Mont Harmon contest, Yanito added: “We were a little anxious, but we kept our composure and played discipline defense. Mont Harmon is a good team, but we had a lot of opportunities to pull away.”
The Thunderbirds’ next scheduled contests are at a round-robin tournament on Saturday, Jan. 4 at Mont Harmon Junior High in Price. Grand is scheduled to play teams from South Sevier and Duchesne, followed by a rematch against Mont Harmon.
The first game is scheduled to start at 10:15 a.m., Yanito said, adding that the team’s previously scheduled Dec. 19 contest at Canyon View Junior High in Huntington was canceled due to weather conditions, but will be rescheduled in February.