Over the weekend the Broncs basketball faithful were treated to 4 varsity games, 2 for the ladies and 2 for the boys and while the boys picked up some serious momentum, the ladies continue to search for identity within the team as they dropped their 12th straight since their last victory back in mid-December.
For the 1st half of the girls game against the Rock Springs Tigers things looked to be turning around for the Lady Broncs as they went toe to toe with the Tigers in a fun and surprising burst of scoring, led by Anna Revill who is to the point the Lady Broncs leading scorer on the season, but in the 2nd half they suddenly felt a force field built over their bucket as the ladies simply went cold an let the Tigers pull away. Then the less said about what happened Saturday against the Natrona Fillies the better. The 31 point defeat was simply proof how just how dominant the Fillies truly are this season. Their crisp cross-court passing and hot shooting hands were simply too much for the Lady Broncs to over come on this day, Natrona did pull their starters in the 4th quarter which allowed Jackson an excellent chance to pad some scoring and make the game a little closer than it had been for most of the contest which hopefully established some much-needed rhythm and will lead itself nicely into the start of this Friday’s contest at home vs Star Valley, a team Jackson dropped a 4 point finish to earlier in the season in Afton. The Broncs definitely play a different game at home though, so this could be a fun rivalry game to catch this Friday at 6pm on SVI-5.
The Boys fared significantly better over the course of their Friday and Saturday. They came away with a thrilling 44-43 victory over Rock Springs followed by an even more impressing showing topping the Natrona Mustangs 50-38. Friday’s contest finished in extremely dramatic fashion as senior Sam Scott drilled the game-winning free throw with mere seconds to play in the game as the ice flowed through his veins in the clutchest situation of the season to this point. The Tigers had their chance though at the end when Jackson fouled with just 3 seconds to play and many thought the foul was during the shot which would have given the Tigers a chance to tie or take the lead from the charity strip. After further official discussion however, it was determined to be a pre-shot foul and Rock Springs was awarded possession but no free throws. On the inbound a tip by a Jackson Bronc deflected the ball toward half court and ultimately resulted in a desperation heave from the Broncs logo by the Tigers which fell short as time expired, giving Jackson their 6th win of the season. The 7th win of the season came a day later in a game that featured a little more breathing room on the scoreboard for the Broncs, a 50-38 victory over Natrona. Where as Friday was a rough game for Andrew Hanna, who was totally neutralized by Rock Springs height across the lineup, on Saturday he was back to his early season ways, shooting 87.5% from the field and leading the team with 16 points on the day. Gavin Keelin and AJ Fowler each contributed 9 as well and took the roles as the team’s deep shooters with Keelin draining a 3 and Fowler adding a hat trick of 3-pointers himself. Keelin was also the star of Friday night, leading the team with 14 points in the absence of Andrew Hanna’s down low game. Hanna and Keelin continue to flash glimpses of true stardom for the Broncs team in what is each of their sophomore season, a scary prospect for the 4A class for the next couple of years.
The Broncs and Lady Broncs now sit at 7-8 and 2-13 respectively on the season but 1 shining spot to look to for each is their defense to this point. The girls giving up 52 points per game to this point but have also faced a slew of excellent shooting teams and rebound with the best teams in the 4A while the boys team actually has the #1 statistical defense in the entire 4A having allowed just 692 total points all season long, just 46 per game. They unfortunately pair this with the 2nd lowest scoring offense in 4A, but with some talented young shooters on the roster, if those youngsters get a hot hand going in March, watch out for a potential Cinderella run from these Broncs.