Badgers Fall 78-61 in Quarterfinals

Photo:  4 Jake Hilton scored 15 points in his final game as a Prescott Badger

The Prescott Badgers season came to an end with a 78-61 quarterfinal loss to the Mesquite Wildcats in the Badger Dome. This was the second time in as many years that the Wildcats have ended the Badgers season. Last year it was a 92-70 road loss.

Photo: 0 Cooper Magnett shoots for two of his 14 points

The game started out slow once again for Prescott as a much quicker and aggressive Wildcat team built a quick 5-0 lead. Cooper Magnett knocked down the first Prescott basket, a three pointer, and it was 5-3. After a Wildcat score, Jake Hilton went inside for a bucket to get within two again at 7-5, with 5:15 left in the first. Then the wheels fell off the wagon, so to speak. Mesquite went on a 18-4 game defining run in those final five minutes, taking some of the wind out of the sales of the home crowd. It was a combination of good Wildcat play and missed opportunities by the Badgers. Even the close calls were not going the home team’s way. An obvious Wildcats flop, resulted in an offensive foul on Zane Gaul, giving the ball back to Mesquite already up 16-9. The visitors’ physicality, and quickness on the boards resulted in many second chance points, as they built a 25-9 lead after just one quarter.

Photo: 10 Zane Gaul scored 10 points and pulled down 7 rebounds

Prescott came out and played a good second quarter, as they were able to respond to the type of play dealt to them in the first eight minutes. Leading scorer, Uriah Tenette was able to score his first basket early in the second quarter.  The Badger offense picked up, but stopping Mesquite was challenging. Zane Gaul scored all of his 10 points in the first half. Tenette finished with six. Despite playing better, the Badgers lost more ground and trailed 49-28 at the half.

The Badgers came out in the second half and were able to play with the Wildcats, but only managed to get within 15 in the final minutes. Jake Hilton made a pair of free throws to get within 73-58 with 2:09 remaining. Prescott coach Travis Stedman played his entire bench trying to find a good combination of to slow down the Wildcats, pulling his starters for the final time with two minutes remaining, for a nice ovation from the crowd. Mesquite kept their starters in till the inside the final minute. Cohen Gonzales led all scorers with 32 for Mesquite. Jamar Trotter added 19 points and seven rebounds. Devone Pless and Desean Middlebrook each had 11. The Wildcats also had 10 steals while shooting 53% from the field.

Magnett said, “We just played a very good team. They are a team with a lot of weapons. Unfortunately, we got behind early and just could not really cut into their lead.” Magnett, who is only a sophomore, added, “We are losing a lot of seniors, but we will have guys like Zane and Uriah back, and we will all work hard at getting back to making another playoff run.” Four of the five starters finished in double figures. Magnett ended with 14. Zane Gaul finished with 10 points, and despite being hammered at times inside, failed to go to the line for a single free throw.

Photo:  1 Uriah Tenette finished his sophomore season with a 23.3 points per game average

Uriah Tenette, ended his amazing sophomore season with 16 points, said, “That was rough. We got behind early and you can’t do that against a good team. We played hard and kept at it but could not make the run we needed to get back into it.

Jake Hilton scored 15 points, playing his final game in a Prescott Badgers uniform, said. “Obviously this is not the way we wanted our season to end. These guys worked hard each day. We got along, we never fought, and worked together to improve as a team. This is tough, but I know that these guys coming back will do their best to carry on what we started this season. I wish them all the best.”

Prescott ends their best season in over two decades at (21-4).


MESQUITE (78)-Gonzales 13 3-3 32, Wollangk 1 2-2 4, Calvin 0 1-2 1, Pless 5 1-1 11, Middlebrook 4 3-6 11, Trotter 9 0-0 19, Gutierrez  0 0-0 0, White 0 0-0 0, Lamb 0 0-0 0. 32 10-14 78.

PRESCOTT (61)-Magnett 4 4-4 14, Tenette 4 8-9 16, Bassett  0 0-0 0, Hilton 5 4-4 15, Gaul 5 0-0 10, Peoples 0 0-0 0, Buettner 1 1-2 3, Lyon 0 0-0 0, Dutson 1 0-0 3, Smith 0 0-0 0, Brown 0 0-0 0, Bernardo 0 0-0 0, Van Dyke 0 0-0 0. 20 17-19 61.

Score by Quarters- 1      2       3       4   –   T

Mesquite                 25    24    17    12  –  78

Prescott                     9    19     16    17  –  61

Total Fouls-M 15, P 13

Fouled Out-None

Three Pointers-M (4)-Gonzales 3, Trotter 1. P(4)-Magnett 2, Hilton 1, Dutson 1


Mesquite 78, PRESCOTT 61

Bradshaw Mountain 51, Cactus 50

Deer Valley 64, ALA-Gilbert North 57

Peoria 75, Dysart 55

SEMIFINALS, Tonight at 7pm

#3 Bradshaw Mountain (24-4) at #2 Peoria (26-4)

#8 Deer Valley (21-7) at #5 Mesquite (21-8)


Perry 64, Desert Mountain 50

Sunnyslope 70, Basha 47

CHAMPIONSHIP at Arizona Veterans Memorial Coliseum, 5:30pm

#10 Sunnyslope (25-5) vs #1 Perry (29-1)



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