DAYTON – After scoring just 17 points in the first half Friday night in Dayton, the Spring Creek boys basketball team found the bucket often in the second half – pulling away for a 51-32 victory over the Dust Devils in Dayton.
The low-scoring first period began with a 4-0 run by the Spartans, earning buckets from senior Thomas Ledford and a midrange jumper by Levi Yaunick.
Junior Joshua Pasasouk notched the first points of the game for the Dust Devils, but Yaunick finished his second field goal of the game and pushed Spring Creek’s advantage to 6-2 just before the four-minute mark.
Dayton cut into the lead with a shot from the elbow by senior Chase Peterson.
Pasasouk tied the ballgame at six-all with his second field goal of the opening frame, but senior Caden Jangard regained the lead for the Spartans on the other end of the floor.
The final bucket of the first quarter was set up by sophomore Reed Westwood, dishing an assist to senior Dakota Larson for the Spartans.
Spring Creek led 10-6 after the first.
As much as the game was a defensive battle in the first, the offenses struggled even more in the second.
Senior Ryan Miner opened the second quarter with a pair of free throws for the Spartans, senior Trevor Burrows making one of two from the stripe for the Dust Devils.
Spring Creek took a 14-7 lead on a deuce by Ledford, set up by a feed from senior Jake Oliphant.
Pasasouk cut the deficit to five with a hook shot in the lane, but Oliphant notched his only points of the first half with a deuce for the Spartans.
Spring Creek closed the stagnant second quarter with a free throw and a 3-0 run.
The Spartans took a 17-9 lead at the break.
The teams couldn’t score the ball in the first half; the defenses couldn’t make stops in the third quarter.
Oliphant opened the third with a score inside for Spring Creek, and Burrows completed a three-point play from the charity stripe for Dayton.
Larson set up Oliphant for his second bucket of the third quarter, and the Spartans took a 23-12 lead on an up-fake finish by Ledford.
Burrows earned a nice dish for a score for the Dust Devils, but Oliphant dropped his fifth and sixth points of the frame in a fast-paced switch.
Pasasouk cut the lead to nine with a bucket, scoring consecutive field goals and trimming the deficit to seven at 25-18.
Miner dropped a floater for the Spartans, and Yaunick scored on consecutive assists from Larson – the first on a lob pass and the second from a Larson steal.
Dayton took a timeout, trailing by 13 at 31-18.
From the reset, Dayton made three free throws – one by Burrows and two from freshman Tyler Stolfich.
A pair of freebies by Jangard pushed the Spring Creek lead back to 12, and the Spartans went up 14 on a Jangard dime to Westwood.
Pasasouk trimmed the deficit to 12 with a deuce and Burrows added to his solid quarter with another And-1 finish and free throw, making the score a single-digit affair at 35-26.
The Spartans sank a free throw and went back up 10, but freshman Lance Peterson scored and trimmed the lead back down to eight.
After a high-scoring third period, Spring Creek took an eight-point lead of 36-28 into the fourth.
The final frame was all Spring Creek.
Oliphant began the fourth with a strong finish in the paint, but Burrows buried a pull-up jumper on the other end – serving as just one of two Dayton field goals in the frame.
Miner finished a contested layup in traffic, and Ledford grabbed his own miss for a put-back and a 42-30 lead.
The Spartans opened up a 14-point advantage with great spacing, the ball finding Yaunick for an easy bucket.
Lance Peterson scored Dayton’s final points on a pass from Stolfich.
The Spartans iced the game from the stripe, scoring their final seven points on free throws.
Yaunick, Oliphant and senior Daniel Eary each buried a pair of freebies while Miner went 1-for-2 down the stretch.
Spring Creek came to life in the second half and pulled away for a 51-32 victory for their first win in league play (1-2) of the Division 3A North, dropping Dayton to an even 1-1 in league.
The Spartans were led in the second half by Oliphant, who scored 10 of his 12 points after the break.
Yaunick also finished with 12 points for Spring Creek.
Ledford closed in double figures with 11 points, and Miner gave the Spartans six points in the ballgame.
Burrows and Pasasouk each scored 12 points for the Dust Devils.
SPRING CREEK – 10 – 7 – 19 – 15 – 51 Total
DAYTON – 6 – 3 – 19 – 4 – 32 Total
The Spartans will close the road trip at 2:30 p.m. Saturday in South Tahoe.