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6A girls basketball: Bingham slams door on Taylorsville semifinal bid with 63-39 win

6A girls basketball: Bingham slams door on Taylorsville semifinal bid with 63-39 win

(Sean Walker, KSL.com, File)


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TAYLORSVILLE — Maybe it was the defense that won the game for Bingham girls basketball during a 63-39 win over Taylorsville in Wednesday’s Class 6A state quarterfinal at Salt Lake Community College.

The Miners shot just 37 percent from the field, including 2-of-16 from 3-point range — but forced 21 turnovers and out-rebounded Taylorsville 48-33.

And every time the Warriors tried to make a comeback, Bingham’s Jaycee Lichtie was there to end the bid.

“She has been a phenomenal leader all the way through,” Bingham coach Charron Mason said of her junior team captain with a bright red ponytail. “She gets everybody going, holds people accountable — but she does it with love and leadership. I couldn’t be more proud of her.”

Lichtie had 14 points to go along with a team-high 11 rebounds and four steals, and Maggie McCord added 13 points, five rebounds and three steals for the Miners, who improved to 16-7 with 11 points and three assists from Samantha Holman.

But the Miners had few answers in the first half for Taylorsville post Finau Tonga, who finished with 10 points, 13 rebounds and six blocked shots.

That opened up the outside, and the Warriors pulled within three, 26-23 on Calleigh DeYoung’s second triple of the half with about four minutes remaining.

But Bingham held the Warriors scoreless from the field for the remainder of the quarter, taking a 30-24 advantage into the locker room.

“In the first half, we weren’t playing team basketball,” Lichtie said. “In the second half, we stepped up to look for the best teammate or the best play.”

The Miners began to pull away in the second half, capping a 15-7 run through the third quarter with Lichtie’s three two minutes into the fourth.

The 5-foot-11 forward scored on three-straight possessions to start the fourth for Bingham up 53-33, and the Warriors never threatened again.

“They just kept playing together,” Mason said. “That’s a huge thing for our team. These girls love to play basketball and they love to play for each other.”

Bingham will face defending 6A champion and top-ranked Fremont in a semifinal Friday at 2:30 p.m. MT at Salt Lake Community College.

If that matchup sounds familiar, it’s for good reason; the Miners lost to the Silver Wolves in last year’s state title game.

They also dropped a close contest during the regular season to Fremont.

“By three,” Mason deadpanned when asked about that Dec. 6 overtime loss in which the Silver Wolves recovered from a double-digit deficit to force the extra session.

So is Bingham ready for that game?

“I am so excited,” Lichtie said. “Yes, yes, absolutely.”

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