By Barry Wong
Battling through the Northeast League must be like fighting through a rigorous gauntlet, with three perennial powers, Canyon Springs, Las Vegas and Valley, expected to battle for the league title each year.
Valley won the first matchup featuring the three teams with a 77-62 victory over Las Vegas.
“It’s a huge win,” Valley head coach Brian Farnsworth said. “Now, we get to regroup, one day of practice, then play Canyon Springs Thursday.”
Farnsworth credits team defense for the win. Valley held the Wildcats to 11 points in the fourth quarter, while scoring 20 to put the game away.
Valley senior Shea Garland led all scorers with 23 points, including several big buckets in the post during Valley’s run in the second half to pull ahead by double digits. Three other Vikings seniors scored in double digits. Taveon Jackson had 13. Cam Burton and Nick Brannon added 12.
For Vegas, senior Devon Colley had a team-high 15, while junior Tyler Bey added 14, and senior Patrick Savoy had 11.
The tough week continues for both teams. Valley hosts Canyon Springs on Thursday, while Las Vegas heads to Desert Pines.