|Schyler Namanny looks to pass the ball during the game against Emery during Friday nights contest which Emery won 55-47.|
It wasn't supposed to be this way.
Riding high all during the regular season, Carbon was supposed to slip into the state playoffs with ease, hosting a lower bracketed team and then heading to Ogden and Weber State University for the first state tournament a Carbon boys team has seen in years.
But on Friday night, an Emery team came north and into the Dinogym to avenge an earlier loss and they were also determined to pick up that same advantage themselves.
Unfortunately for Carbon they did just what they intended by beating the Dinos 55-47.
The gym was at standing room capacity well before tip off. Pre-game ceremonies included the football booster club presenting the school with an award honoring the two teachers who had died in the past two years. The senior cheerleaders and the Dino dancers were also presented with flowers and thanked for the support they have given the team. The senior basketball players and their families were presented to the crowd and Coach Ted Bianco gave an emotional speech and thanked his wife for her support as well.
Then the two teams locked horns and went at it. Carbon's defense had control for the first quarter of play. They smothered the Spartans at every turn and had a seven point lead by the first break.
The crowd noise was intense, each side's crowd cheering every basket and every call the referees made.
Emery came back and gave the Dinos a taste of their own medicine with a stepped up defense and limited the Carbon boys to eight in the second quarter. Outside shooting kept the Dinos in the game. Two points were all the separated the teams when they headed to the locker rooms for the half time break.
After an entertaining half time show, it was again Carbon's turn to take control of the game. Intense defense gave the Dinos a five point lead at the end of the third quarter of play.
The passion from both teams continued to keep the lead bouncing back and forth until there was three and a half minutes left to play. Mistakes and turnovers by the Dinos began to change the tempo of the game. The Spartans pulled away.
The home crowd felt the game slip away and in the end it was Emery's crowd who was the loudest.
The 15 points put up by Chase Julian was not enough to get the job done. Schyler Namanny added 13. Bryan Gazell hit all of his nine from beyond the three point line. Namanny and Julian also put in a pair from downtown.
Unfortunately the losing wasn't over for the Dinos. With the loss of the game Emery and Carbon were tied for second place in Region 8 and a coin toss ensued to see who would go as the third place team, and who would stay at second. Carbon lost the toss and will be traveling to play its first round of the state tournament. That game will be at Morgan High School, the second place team in Region 10.
This year the Trojans have only lost during the regular season to powerful Judge Memorial and have an 15-6 record overall. They are probably one of the best second place teams in the state.
That first round playoff game will be on Friday night at 7 p.m.