It was another good weekend for the Braves basketball team as they made the northward trek to face a pair of teams from the 4A northwest and came away with a pair of victories.
On Friday the Braves matched up with the Cody Broncs which has become an exciting rivalry over the past handful of years with the two schools sharing the last nine Wyoming 3A football championships. That familiarity spills over onto the court although on Friday the Braves outside shooting quickly doused any Cody fervor of a home court win.
The Braves combined for 12 three-point baskets en route to a 64-39 win. Max Jensen, Cooper Lancaster, PJ Horsley and Simon Gaskell hit double figures.
Saturday’s contest was a relatively quick turnaround in Riverton in an afternoon clash. The two programs have split the last ten meetings and the Wolverines eliminated the Braves from the State tournament last season. A close game got away from the Braves a bit as Riverton built a double-digit lead. Star Valley battled back to tie the game at 38-38 before the Wolverines went on another big run and led 53-43 with less than three minutes to go.
This Braves squad has been a resilient one and they refused to concede as they battled back to cut the game to a one-possession lead on some timely shooting from Jensen.
Star Valley, trailing by three with the final possession, saw Jensen drive the lane and make the basket and draw the foul which would tie the contest. The free throw was off the mark but the ball caromed off a Riverton player to keep the ball in Star Valley hands and a score of 54-53.
The two coaches traded timeouts in a chess match before the final play resulted in a three-point buzzer-beater for Jensen with a final of 56-54.
The pair of wins improve Star Valley’s record to (13-3) overall as they will return home to host the Kelly Walsh Trojans on Friday night and the Rock Springs Tigers on Saturday afternoon.
The Lady Braves have overcome a slow start in the wins column to even their record prior to this past weekend’s road trip to #2 Cody and the Riverton Wolverines. Star Valley’s scoring output has increased significantly with six wins in their last seven games and for the first half of their contest against the Fillies, the team played toe to toe with the defending champs. At the halftime break the score was 23-20 in favor of the home team.
Cody then amped up the pressure and the Lady Braves struggled to beat it in a third-quarter ambush that saw the Fillies break the game open with a 17-0 run. The combination of Idaho State bound Molly Hayes, and Ellie Talich was too much as the duo combined for 44 points.
Star Valley did right the ship a bit in the fourth quarter as the final score showed 65-42 in favor of Cody. Kenlee Engelhard led the team with 16 points.
With a quick night’s sleep and a drive to Riverton, the Lady Braves and Wolverines had a slow start but Star Valley kept a slim lead throughout the first half. Star Valley then did a bit of ambushing on their own in the second half as they turned a six-point advantage into a 54-38 final. Emily Dana finished with 15 points and eight rebounds in the game. Bailey Erickson chipped in 11 and Engelhardt finished with eight assists.
The weekend split puts Star Valley’s record at (8-8) overall as they return home to host both Kelly Walsh and Rock Springs this next weekend.
The onslaught of wrestling tournaments over a period of two months is now over the Braves as they take their skills and information into a pair of duals to end the regular season prior to the 4A West Regionals at Kelly Walsh High School on February 17.
The first of those duals was this past Thursday as Star Valley hosted Green River, the reigning 3A state champs. It was also senior night as the crowd honored those who were grappling on the home match for the final time.
The dual itself has proven to be great entertainment for wrestling fans over the years with both schools sharing a great tradition. On Thursday, both coaches were making changes to the lineup and it was the Wolves who came out on top this time with a 43-25 score.
This next week will be a dual on the road against the Evanston Red Devils on Thursday, February 8.
144: Nick Weipert (GRRI) over Ty Thompson (STVA) (MD 11-0)
150: Porter Merritt (STVA) over Maddux Hintz (GRRI) (Dec 10-3)
157: Kooper Burk (STVA) over Zachary Dalton (GRRI) (Dec 6-0)
165: James Herwaldt (GRRI) over Tristan Jensen (STVA) (Fall 2:17)
175: Kal Burk (STVA) over Declan Henderson (GRRI) (Fall 1:24)
190: Christian Balzly (GRRI) over Grant Thomson (STVA) (Fall 5:10)
215: Ryan Talbot (STVA) over Jakob Lloyd (GRRI) (Dec 5-1)
285: Easton Smith (STVA) over Antonio Savedra (GRRI) (Fall 1:27)
106: Bentley Johnson (GRRI) over Kimball Parry (STVA) (SV-1 6-4)
113: Lucas Todd (GRRI) over Kayden Crookston (STVA) (Fall 0:53)
120: Weston Green (GRRI) over Maxwell Jirak (STVA) (Fall 3:46)
126: Spencer Wright (GRRI) over Peyton McMurdo (STVA) (Fall 1:03)
132: Tel Parry (STVA) over Kaleb Gunter (GRRI) (MD 9-0)
138: Axel Mackinnon (GRRI) over Kaleb Byrd (STVA) (Fall 1:16)
Members of the SVHS Indoor Track and Field team competed at the Olympic Oval in Kearns, Utah over the weekend. Here’s a look at how the top finishers fared. The top finish came from Valerie Jirak who flew to a first-place finish in the Long Jump with a distance of 19′ 2.75″:
Habtamu Wetzel 1600 M. 4:30
Jase Burton 1600 M. 4:34
Peter Lorch. 1600 M. 4:41
Habtamu Wetzel. 3200 M. 9:27
Jase Burton. 3200 M. 9:37
Colton Cranney. 3200 M. 9:59
Peter Lorch. 3200 M. 10:00
Matt Heywood. 3200 M. 10:42
Valerie Jirak. 60 M. 7.94
Valerie Jirak. 200 M 25.27
Kammi Merritt 200 M 26.02
Valerie Jirak. 400 M. 57.11
Valerie Jirak L Jump 19’2.75
The Lady Braves wresting team did not have an event this week but will be hosting a pool of wrestlers from the region on Tuesday at SVHS.