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Nicole Boliaux, Deseret News

Springville stuns defending 4A champion Olympus for first state title since 1958

By Sean Walker  |  Posted Mar 4th, 2017 @ 9:53pm


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OGDEN — It took a little luck along the way to get there.

But for the first time in 59 years, Springville High School will welcome a boys basketball state championship home.

Josh Elison scored 16 of his game-high 28 points after halftime, including the game-winning free throws in double-overtime, to help the Red Devils stun top-ranked Olympus 81-79 Saturday at Weber State and claim the school’s first boys basketball state title since 1958.

Andrew Slack added 18 points and nine rebounds for Springville (21-5), and Ben Schreiber scored 10 for the Red Devils.

Elison scored 12 points on four 3-pointers in the first half as Springville jumped out to a 24-13 lead in the second quarter that Olympus trimmed to 31-26 at halftime. But Travis Wagstaff led the Titans back, cutting the deficit to three on a fast break with just over two minutes left in the third quarter.

Matt Lindsey gave the Titans (24-3) their first lead at 44-42 of the game with a pair of free throws in the final seconds of the third quarter, and the Titans pushed the margin as high as six in the final period.

Springville had a little comeback juice left in it, as well.

Springville High School Red Devils senior guard Josh Elison (3) is forced out of bounds during the game against the Olympus High School Titans in the final round of the boy's 4A basketball championship in the Dee Events Center in Ogden on Saturday, March 4, 2017. The Red Devils went on to win 81 to 79 in double overtime, winning their first state title since 1958. (Photo: Nicole Boliaux, Deseret News)

Seth Mortensen hit a deep 3-pointer as time expired in regulation to send the game to overtime, and the Red Devils took the lead in the extra period as they looked to win their first state championship on their third try since 1984.

But Wagstaff had other intentions. The 6-foot-7 senior knocked down a pair of 3-pointers, including one in the final seconds of overtime, to force a second extra period. Wagstaff finished with 12 points and six rebounds, and Ryan Jones led Olympus with 29 points, eight assists and three steals in the Titans' bid for a repeat state championship after winning their first title in school history one year ago.

No team led by more than two in double OT. But when Elison took the ball inside to the rim and was tripped, he calmly knocked down his seventh-straight free throw with 2.1 seconds on the clock and the Red Devils broke through to break the 59-year drought.

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