Photo by Clint Allen

SMITHFIELD – Mountain Crest did not score in the second half until there was just over six minutes left in the fourth quarter, finally breaking a 21-0 second half run for Pine View. The Mustangs were down 31-28 when they finally scored in the second half and took the lead back 33-31 on a Panther turnover with five minutes left. However, the Panthers closed the game on a 13-3 run and handed Mountain Crest a 44-36 loss in their season opener.

It was a tale of two halves for Mountain Crest under new coach Chandler Smith as they opened the first quarter 16-4 and led at half 26-10. They forced eight first half Panther turnovers and senior Preston Lofthouse abused the defense in the paint for 15 first half points. Newcomer Karson Falslev had 11 at half for the Mustangs, but they were held to five combined points in the second half. Lofthouse finished with a game high 18 points and Faslev had 13 as the double digit scorers for the Mustangs. No one else scored more than two points for the Mustangs’ four other scorers.

Pine View upped their defense in the second half, forcing ten second half turnovers from Mountain Crest. Nash Schroeder and Benson Shepherd found their rhythm on offense in the second half, scoring 22 of their 30 combined points. Schroeder finished with a team high 16 points and Shepherd had 14 after scoring 21 in their season opening win against Canyon View.

The Mustangs finished 7-11 from the free throw line, but missed three in the fourth quarter. Pine View went 7-10 from the charity stripe, but missed the front end of two one and ones in the fourth quarter. However, Mountain Crest could not get the lid off the rim in the second half as they were outscored 34-10 over the final two quarters.

Mountain Crest plays the first game of the North vs South Showdown against Cedar Friday night at 5:30. The Reds lost 88-85 in double overtime against Sky View in their season opener.

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