JUNCTION – The boys’ basketball team at Piute High School lost a hard-fought nail-biter to the Eagles, 54-53, in Duchesne Friday night. Both teams sank 18 field goals during the matchup. Free throws and 3-pointers made the difference between the two squads. The Thunderbirds made 14 of 22 from the line, while the Eagles hit 12 of 22 foul shots. The Eagles drilling five from downtown to Piute’s three treys resulted in the Eagles being ahead by one-point at the final buzzer.
Piute jumped to a 12-8 lead in the first quarter. The T-birds put 10 points on the scoreboard in the second stanza, while the Eagles chalked 11. The teams split for halftime with Piute on top, 22-19. Duchesne came back strong in the third quarter scoring 16 points and holding Piute to just five points, which turned their three-point deficit into an eight-point advantage. The T-birds fought back during the final eight-minute stretch, chalking 26 points to the Eagles 19 points, yet fell one-point short of the win.
Piute’s Kelby Jessen nailed three from behind the arc for nine of his 23 points. Quade Gleave followed with 17 points. Reagan Dalton contributed seven points, Westen Sylvester had four and Wesley Jensen put up two for the T-birds.
Piute currently has a 2-0 league record and a 6-3 overall record.
The T-birds will host the Valley Buffaloes in Junction Saturday, Jan. 4, at 7 p.m.