<strong>SMITHFIELD—</strong> The excitement and anticipation for a matchup between valley rivals was for naught as the Mountain Crest boys basketball team cruised past Sky View Friday, 62-45, behind a game-high 24 points from senior Tyler Crosbie.
“Perfect so far,” MC head coach Graydon Buchmiller said. “Still early in region but we definitely came out with a determined purpose tonight. It was good to see five guys on the same page with a majority of things that we’re doing.”
Future Aggie Jalen Moore had his cheek cut open early in the first quarter and was forced to leave the game until early in the second quarter.
“I just went to block and his elbow swung across and split underneath my eye,” Moore said.
Despite his absence, Sky View led for most of the first quarter, but a buzzer-beating 3-pointer gave Mountain Crest a two-point edge and sparked the Mustangs as they slowly created some space throughout the second quarter for a 28-21 halftime lead.
Crosbie tallied 14 of his 24 points in the first half to spur the Mustangs, and the defense stifled the Bobcats to allow just six points in the second quarter.
“We came out more aggressive than they did,” Crosbie said. “We tried to run the floor a little bit more and get up and down, play our game. We tried to come out aggressive and didn’t look back after that.”
Ty Nielsen had a big game for the Bobcats, scoring seven of his team-high 21 points in the first quarter and carrying Sky View throughout, as Moore struggled from the field.
However, despite Nielsen’s offense, Sky View struggled to keep pace with the Mountain Crest run-n-gun offense. Senior Faimafili Laulu-Pututau scored eight of his 17 points in the third quarter, and the Mustangs used a 9-2 run to blow the game open in the third and cruise to the win.
“Our defense definitely fuels us and helps us get going and get some baskets in transition,” Buchmiller said. “Mo (Pututau) is a solid scorer for us. He’s very versatile and we can use him in multiple positions and face up from the outside.”
Mountain Crest remains perfect in Region 5 play at 4-0 with its seventh straight win, and is 10-4 overall. Sky View fell to 12-4 overall and 2-2 in region play with the loss.
The Mustangs return home to host Box Elder on Wednesday, Jan. 30, while the Bobcats will look to get back in the win column the same night on the road against Roy. Both games are scheduled for 7 p.m.