This Wednesday at 7 p.m. in the gym in Driggs, the Teton boys’ basketball team will play Sugar-Salem, who won the first round of the district tournament on Tuesday against South Fremont, but Coach Rob Heuseveldt is already thinking about the state tournament in March.
“Four or five of the best teams in the state are right here,” he said, listing off eastern Idaho’s 3A contenders like top-ranked Snake River, Marsh Valley, Teton, South, and Sugar. “There are a few unknowns like Priest River and Fruitland, but we have the best conference in the state. Whoever makes it out of the Mountain Rivers tournament has a good shot.”
Teton has a tied record against Marsh Valley, and lost in overtime to Snake River on Jan. 22 in the team’s worst game of the season, shooting-wise. The team, which usually manages to score off over 30 percent of its shots, only made 11 percent of them and lost by five points. To make matters worse, four-year varsity player Luke Thompson sprained an ankle that game. But his absence has forced other players to step up their own play in a big way, Heuseveldt said.
“I’m really excited about how the team has progressed and how the individual players have raised the level of their game,” he said.
He added that in his four years as head coach, Heuseveldt hasn’t seen better basketball than what’s happening on the court this year. In any given game, eight or so of Teton’s varsity members could put up 15 or 20 points, and that bench depth means other teams can’t focus on shutting down just one or two players.
Teton is undefeated in the conference so far; to finish out their regular season, the Timberwolves beat the Diggers 73-58 last Wednesday and the Cougars 73-57 on Friday.
Heuseveldt encourages the community to come out and support Teton at home on Wednesday evening. “We earned the home court by being the top seed, so let’s have a home court advantage.”
Lady Timberwolves fall to Snake River in play-in game
It was a regional play-in game where the winner moves on to the state play-in game and the loser goes home. The game involved two teams who were very familiar with each other in Snake River and Teton, runners-up in their respective conferences.
Snake River won both contests and made it three straight on Thursday, Feb. 11, with a 53-36 win.
With the win, Snake River will play Kimberly in the state play-in game at 1 p.m. Saturday at Pocatello High School.
Snake River led 27-18 at the half and controlled things from that point on.
Teton tried to get back into the game in the third period, but after a brief run, Snake River came back and only gave up two points on the halftime lead.
The fourth quarter was all Snake River as they outscored the Timberwolves 18-8.
A total of eight different players scored for Snake River, while Teton only had four score in the game, led by Tatum Streit’s 19 points.