Lady Devils push through injuries, topple Templars, Hawks
by Drew Chowbay
The Times-Independent
Jan 11, 2018 | 924 views | 0 0 comments | 49 49 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Girls Basketball
 ​Hannah Owen (No. 32) shrugs off her shoulder injury to score 17 points against Manti. 				      Photo by Drew Chowbay
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The Lady Devils varsity basketball squad was in the zone this week, winning both home games against Manti, 51-46, and North Sanpete, 43-36.

In their first matchup with the Templars, the Lady Devils stumbled and almost gave away a game that they were largely in control of. Grand County enjoyed a healthy lead after the first quarter, up 19-10, but were outscored in the second and third quarters — and actually lost the lead late in the game. They did manage a comeback to secure the victory when junior Annabelle Garrett sank a shot late in the game that put the Devils back over the Templars, but it was still too close for comfort.

“They triumphed over adversity,” said head coach Randy Martin. “They didn’t panic. A year ago, they would’ve panicked ... but they used their time better, played smart, and overcame the three-point deficit.” Martin emphasized the team’s marginal improvement from last year, explaining that a three-point deficit would’ve caused the team to fall apart.

“The girls would’ve tried to cover the deficit in one play, whereas this year, they remained calm and chipped away at the Templars until they regained the lead, using time to their advantage,” he said.

Hannah Owen scored a whopping 17 points with a shoulder injury, Veda Gritts put up 12 points, and Garrett scored eight — just enough to give the Lady Devils the win.

The Lady Devils also toppled the North Sanpete Lady Hawks over the weekend, but it was not a good showing for the girls despite the win.

“We didn’t play as well,” Martin said. “The offense really struggled, and we had problems spacing on the court.” Martin also explained that improper spacing on the court led to sloppy execution of plays, as well as turnovers.

Junior Mercedes Zunich put up nine points, and Owen and Gritts put up 13 and 12, respectively. Owen has been consistently putting up high numbers, despite sustaining a shoulder injury that was supposed to sideline her for a few games. According to Martin, Owen suffered a “slight shoulder separation,” but was cleared by doctors to play four minutes a quarter. “We really miss her when she’s not out there,” laughed Martin.

Owen remained an asset for the Lady Devils despite the injury and limited playing time. She has been cleared by doctors to play seven minutes a quarter in the upcoming matchups against Richfield and South Sevier, which with eight-minute quarters, is essentially the entire game.

Sophomore Toni McElhaney is also suffering from a shoulder injury. She has been cleared for practice, but will be sidelined for games for two weeks with a slight rotator cuff injury. Martin said that the team is going to be working on spacing and shooting over the span of this week.

The Lady Devils will host Richfield on Friday night. Varsity tip-off is set for 7 p.m.

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