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Produced & Maintained by Idaho Mountain Express, Box 1013, Ketchum, ID 83340-1013 
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Copyright © 2002 Express Publishing Inc.
All Rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part in any form or medium without express written permission of Express Publishing Inc. is prohibited. 

For the week of February 19 - 25, 2003


Shoshone shuts 
down Cutthroat 
state dream 44-41

 In Northside tournament

Express Staff Writer

Shoshone’s defense clamped down on the high-scoring Community School offense at just the right time—and the host Indians snuck away with a 44-41 victory in Tuesday’s Northside 1A Sub-District tournament.

Coach Larry Messick’s #2-seeded Shoshone squad (17-8) thus earned the Northside’s second berth to the State 1A tournament March 5 in Caldwell. An outstanding season ended for coach Mike Wade’s Cutthroats (13-9), who won 12 of their final 16 games and placed third.

Shoshone applied a box-and-one defense to isolate leading Cutthroat scorer John Hayes (15.1 ppg) down the homestretch of the low-scoring game. Hayes finished with just 6 points, plus 2 rebounds and 3 steals.

Much of the Cutthroat offense revolves around the outside shooting of Hayes—and the 5-11 lefty couldn’t spring free of quick Indian guard Pedro Garcia. That left most of the outside shooting over Shoshone’s zone defense to other Cutthroat players, and the shots just didn’t fall.

In contrast, Shoshone did a good job of getting the ball in the hands of their top scorers, senior Mike Fitzgerald and junior Tony Pereira. Fitzgerald (8 rebounds, 3 steals) scored 10 of his game-high 15 points in the second half and Pereira (8 rebounds, 3 assists) ended up with 13 points.

Pereira’s three-point play on a strong post move gave Shoshone its first lead of the game, 30-29, with 2:47 remaining in the third quarter.

The game seesawed until Hayes scrambled for a loose ball, put up a shot from the paint and got the roll for a 41-40 Cutthroat lead with 45 seconds remaining. Fitzgerald answered by using the backboard on a drive to the hole, putting Shoshone on top for good 42-41 with 25 seconds left.

Phillip Royal, Shoshone sophomore, made both charities on a huge one-and-one with six seconds remaining to nail down the victory.

The Cutthroats, coming off a very tough 45-41 loss to Northside tourney champion Carey just 24 hours before, started well and built nine-point leads in the first and second quarters of Tuesday’s elimination game.

Playing in his final game, captain Ethan Weston fueled the fire of Sun Valley’s tough man-to-man defense by shutting down Pereira for the entire first quarter. The Cutthroats got scoring from five different players and led 15-7 at the break.

Weston (8.4 ppg), who had scored a season-best 14 points against Carey the previous night, got off to a hot start with two buckets and junior Dylan McIlhenny (10.9 ppg) added 4 points, 2 rebounds, 2 steals and 2 assists in the first quarter alone.

In the second quarter, however, the Cutthroats squandered a golden opportunity to build a bigger lead. They grew impatient in their halfcourt offense and didn’t get good shots, particularly when Weston went to the bench with six minutes left in the half, carrying two personal fouls.

Bret Watson’s 3-pointer with three minutes left gave the Cutthroats a 21-12 cushion—but Fitzgerald and Royal popped from the outside and Pereira nailed two charities cutting Shoshone’s deficit to 21-18 at half.

The pace picked up in the third—Josh Sonneland’s fast break basket from McIlhenny lending the Cutthroats a 27-18 lead. But Shoshone’s Fitzgerald did some ballhawking on the press and junior Josh Zech made a 3-point play for a 27-27 tie.

Fitzgerald and Royal got Shoshone the lead in the fourth and it was The Community School’s turn to battle back, which it did on inside forays by McIlhenny and Hayes. Then, Fitzgerald’s bank shot on a drive with 25 seconds left put Shoshone ahead to stay 42-41.

Cutthroat junior Jim Fairchild (11.7 ppg) was quiet in the second half, but he finished with 7 points and a game-high 11 rebounds and 6 blocked shots. Weston had 8 points and 5 boards; and McIlhenny a team-high 10 points, 5 boards and 5 assists.

Sonneland added 7 points and 5 rebounds.

The Cutthroats shot a season-low 3-for-4 from the stripe. In their final two games, a four-point loss to #1-seeded Carey and the three-point loss to #2 Shoshone, the #3-seeded Cutthroats were out-shot 39-17 and outscored 24-11 at the free throw line.

For the season the Cutthroats were 197-348 (57%) from the free throw line. Opponents were 221-381 (58%).

Offensively the Cutthroats averaged 57.5 ppg and yielded 49.8 ppg. They put together winning streaks of four, three and five games and finished 8-6 away from home.

The 57.5 ppg scoring average was the best in school history, exceeding the 56.0 ppg of the school’s only state tournament team, in 1998. And the 13-9 record was the second-best in 10 years of Cutthroat varsity basketball, trailing only the 15-11 mark of 1998.

Scoring: Hayes 316 points, Fairchild 257, McIlhenny 228, Weston 134, Luc McCann 100, Sonneland 95, Watson 73, Drew Detwiler 26, Juan Munoz 20, Jonathan Goldberg 9 and Logan Koffler 7.

Hayes drilled 38 of the team’s 78 3-pointers. Other long-distance scorers: McCann 11, McIlhenny 10, Sonneland 6, Weston 5, Watson 5 and Fairchild 3.

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