The Wasatch Academy Tigers finish 2nd in the Vivint Great Western Shootout, losing to Washington State 2nd ranked Richland Bombers. The seventh annual Vivint Great Western Shootout tournament was held at Orem High School from December 7-9. Golden Holt, who is the tournament director and Orem High School’s basketball coach. “One of the things that set us apart from other tournaments in Utah is we offer Utah teams a chance to play against some of the top teams from around the country.”
Thursday’s game against the Virginia state Wakefield Warriors was a bit tight before the Tigers’ overwhelming size and athleticism took charge in the second half. Leading that charge was the play of big men, such as junior Tyrese Samuel (6-foot-8), junior Bernardo Da Silva (6-9) and sophomore Mady Sissoko (6-9), along with quality guard play from seniors Damion Squire and Matt Bradley, who scored 22 and 20 points, respectively.
On Friday, the Tigers defeated Colorado state top-ranked school, Smokey Hill Buffaloes, 72-50. Matt Bradley dominated the game scoring 24 points and followed up by Tyrese Samuel securing 21 points.
Saturday’s game against Richland Bombers (WA) presented many challenges with the Tigers trailing the Bombers most of the game. With 35 seconds left on the clock, the Tigers trailed the Bombers 65-62. A 3-pointer off target, Tigers, were put-back at the horn but come up 1 point short. The Richland Bombers knocked off the nationally ranked Tigers, 67-66. Matt Bradley states, “We learned from the lost tremendously. We’re awake now.”