It’s going to be one heck of a Class 2-A West boys tournament beginning two weeks from Thursday in Riverton. The logjam that represents the Class 2-A Northwest and Southwest became even more convoluted Friday at Shoshoni with an extremely entertaining 73-71 win by the Wranglers over visiting St. Stephen’s. The non-league classic might be a good indicator of what’s in store for the West regional.
St. Stephen’s came out blazing, taking a quick 6-0 lead, then rolling on to an 11-2 advantage. A timeout by Shoshoni head coach Jonathan Wakelin settled his troops, but the Eagles were flying high and had doubled the score by the first break at 20-10.
Shoshoni is a team that doesn’t foul much. In a game at Pavillion late last month the Wranglers committed only nine total fouls on the game, and Wind River didn’t have a single free throw attempt.
Game officials did an outstanding job in both the Wind River and St. Stephen’s games played by the Wranglers.
The trend to not foul continued at home Friday against the Eagles. Shoshoni was whistled for just eight total fouls, with four of those going to Quintan Clark. On the other side of the ledger, St. Stephen’s had a team total of 23 fouls, with Tyren Ridgely and Lawrence Jenkins each fouling out with just seconds remaining in the game.
After the slow start, Shoshoni rallied with their highest scoring period of the season, tallying 27 points behind 14 in the quarter from senior Alex Mills. Mills drilled a pair of 3-point shots, added a couple of drives, and hit four-of-four from the line in perhaps the best eight minutes of play in his entire career.
Fellow senior Trey Fike was a magician throughout the contest. Fike led the Wranglers with 28 points, with most of those coming on acrobatic fadeaway shots in the paint, blazing fast drives, or breakaway layups. Fike’s only blemish on the game came at the line where he hit just seven of 15 attempts after being hammered throughout the game on drives to the basket.
Mills tallied 25 total in the contest and was perfect in five attempts from the line.
Clark, a 6-2 sophomore, had his best varsity game as well, scoring a dozen points and snagging eight rebounds.
The Eagles scored as they often do from well beyond the 3-point arc. They hit 10 long-range bombs on the game, paced by five from Cyrus Tindall. He was high scorer for St. Stephen’s with 17. Caydon Lone Dog added three treys, and Steven Lone Dog and Tyren Ridgley hit solo 3-pointers.
After the initial St. Stephen’s surge, the game was close, with six lead changes and five ties.
At the end of the third, nothing had been decided with the score locked at 55.
A Tindall 3-pointer, and a floating jump shot by Ridgley lifted St. Stephen’s to a 71-65 advantage with 1:59 remaining, but that was it for the Eagle offense.
Shoshoni rallied behind their two seniors with a towering baseline 3-pointer by Mills to cut the margin to 71-28, followed by a sprinting drive by Fike for a heavily contested layup with 1:20 left.
Trailing 71-70 the Wranglers picked up their half-court defense and St. Stephen’s missed a pair of shots and had a pair of turnovers down the stretch before Fike hit the game-winner on a pull-up trey from the Elbow with 36 seconds on the clock.
The Wranglers are at Wright on Saturday.
Shoshoni 10 27 18 18 – 73
St. Stephen’s 20 13 22 16 – 71
Shoshoni – Alex Mills 4 (4) 5-5 25, Trey Fike 9 (1) 7-15 28, Leslie Todd 1 0-1 2, Quintan Clark 3 6-8 12, Braxton Mills 3 0-5 6. Totals 20 (5) 18-31 73
St. Stephen’s – Caydon Lone Dog 1 (3) 2-4 13, Steven Lone Dog 3 (1) 0-0 9, Stephon Lone Dog 2 0-0 4, Terrell Jenkins 1 0-0 2, Aiden Spoonhunter 1 0-0 2, Lawrence Jenkins 5 0-0 10, Cyrus Tindall 1 (5) 0-0 17, Tyren Ridgley 5 (1) 1-2 14. Totals 19 (10) 3-6 71