NEW YORK – Fundamental basketball is alive and kicking here.
Just ask Fremont coach Lisa Dalebout.
“I’m obsessed with them,” she said. “We strive to be perfect. We like players that dribble and shoot with both hands. We pass the ball together. We defend together and that’s the unique thing about this team.”
Amanda Wayment provided the offense with 12 points and the defense took care of the rest in the Silver Wolves’ 43-33 win over Miami (Fla.) Senior High Thursday in the semifinals of the Dick’s Sporting Goods High School National Girls’ Tournament at Christ the King High School’s Father John Savage Memorial Gymnasium.
Fremont (Plain City, Utah) goes for the championship Saturday at Madison Square Garden against No. 10 Riverdale Baptist (Upper Marlboro, Md.) at 10 a.m. (ESPN2).
“We need to play our game and not worry about the atmosphere but will be excited to play there [Madison Square Garden],” senior guard Sydnee Ward said.
Fremont held the lead from start to finish, but things became interesting late.
In the final quarter, Miami cut the deficit to 10 points, 33-23, when Mompremier hit on a hook shot with 5:52 left. Mompremier dropped in two free throws with 1:23 left, making it 39-29, but Miami could not draw any closer.
The No. 20 Stingarees (31-2) reduced the deficit to six points midway through the third period, but Fremont's 9-1 tear to carried a 33-19 lead into the fourth. Ward (eight points) threw in a 3-point dagger and McKenzie Burrows went hard to rim for two, challenging Mompremier in the lane.
Mompremier, a 6-4 center, finished with 14 points, grabbed 10 rebounds and blocked six shots. Miami made 12 of 49 shots for 24.5 percent.
“We knew what they were capable of and did a good job on defense,” said Wayment, a BYU recruit.
The Silver Wolves took command in the first quarter, taking a 10-5 lead. They stretched it to 18-8 by halftime as the Stingarees looked discombobulated not playing in any organized game since mid-February when the won Florida’s Class 8A championship.
Wayment scored eight points and Ward added five for the Utahans in the opening half. Mompremier, considered a high-major recruit, had one point and four rebounds as Fremont limited her touches in the post.
Miami only connected on 3 of 20 shots (15 percent) and were outrebounded, 27-17, in spite of a height advantage in the paint.
“You can tell these girls from Utah have been playing together for a while. Today we didn’t have a feel or a rhythm,” Miami coach Sam Baumgarten said.
Utah’s Class 5A state champions committed 22 turnovers, as Miami’s quick, athletic guards were bothersome.
“That’s concerning. We need to take better care of the basketball tomorrow,” Dalebout said.
– Christopher Lawlor reporting