On Jan. 24 and 25, the GCMS seventh-graders hosted the Thunderbird Winter Classic, which featured teams from Blanding, Roosevelt, Whitehorse, and Monticello. Grand played Blanding in the title game and won 50-12. The GCMS “C” team also faced Roosevelt in the third-place game, but came up short, Yanito said, adding that the C team has an overall record of 5-2.
On Feb. 7 and 8, the GCMS eighth-grade team hosted the Thunderbird Winter Shoot-Out tournament, which featured the following teams: Grand Thunderbirds, Roosevelt Riders, Blanding Mustangs, Vernal Shocks, Carbondale Wolverines, Whitehorse Raiders, Duchesne Eagles, and the Pinnacle Panthers.
Grand ended up going 5-1 in that tournament, losing the championship game in overtime 51-45 to Vernal.
“Vernal was definitely the team to beat coming to the tournament beating its opponents by an average of 43 points per game,” Yanito said. “They were tall and definitely the best team we’ve played all season.”
Grand’s Alec Williams tied the score at 41 with a free throw with less than a second remaining, but missed the second free throw and the game went into overtime period, during which Vernal ended up outscoring the T-Birds 10 to 4.
“We played very poised disciplined defense but just came up short,” Yanito said, adding that the GCMS teams have five more games scheduled during February, including successive games this week at Blanding, Whitehorse, and Monticello.