The Kanab Cowboys claimed third place in the annual Cowboy Classic basketball tournament held last weekend, while Gunnison took the title.

Kanab fell to Gunnison on Friday night 60-50, and then came back and beat Millard by almost the same score on Saturday night, 60-51.

Richfield pounded Millard 67-30 on Friday and looked to be the favorite in the championship game, but Gunnison had other ideas and beat the Wildcats 53-41 to claim the trophy.

Kanab was led by Mark Bate, as the 6’10” Cowboy scored 19 in the game against Millard and 11 versus Gunnison.

The Cowboys led comfortably at the half 32-21 in the third place match-up with Millard. Two almost identical quarters saw Kanab put up 16 points in the first and second frames, while Millard scored 10 and 11.

The Cowboys stretched their lead to 15 points midway through the third, before hitting a cold spell. The Eagles outscored Kanab 15-11 to get within 43-36 heading into the final quarter. Millard closed the gap to three points with a minute left to play in the game before a big hoop by Bate with 50 seconds left gave Kanab a little breathing room. The Cowboys held off the Eagles and won by nine 60-51.

Besides Bate’s 19 points, the balanced Kanab scoring attack saw Brandon Jenson score nine and Chase Adams eight, with Cortland Spute, Davin Houston and Hadin Jones adding six apiece.

Tanner Slavens hit six three-pointers on his way to 20 points to lead Millard, while Jeffrey Robison put in 11.

In their loss to Gunninson Friday, the locals only trailed by five at the break 31-26, but a big third quarter by the Bulldogs saw them outscore the Cowboys 22-13, to take a commanding 53-39 lead into the final stanza. Kanab outscored Gunnison 11-7 in the fourth, but it was not enough as the Bulldogs won 60-50.

Alongside Bate’s 11 points, Jenson tallied 10, with Spute and Jones netting six each. Adams, Dan Ramsay and Merrill Terry contributed four apiece.

Gunnison was led by Colby Caldwell with 16 points, while Nik Roberts netted 13 and Drake Reynolds hit for 10.

In Richfield’s blowout win over Millard on Friday, a 31-13 halftime lead was just too much, as they ran away with it 67-30. Brenan Thomas scored 15 to lead Richfield. Jaylon Steck netted 14, with Brandon Willardson adding 12.

In the Classic Championship game, after trailing by seven, 13-6, Gunnison shut out the Wildcats in the second frame 19-0, to take a 25-13 lead at the break. They cruised from there to win 53-41.

Caldwell once again led Gunnison with 20 points, while Lafe Christensen scored 12 and Reynolds added 10. Willardson tallied 13 and Brandon Griffin 10 to pace Richfield.

On December 20, before the Christmas break, Kanab traveled to Page and lost to the Sand Devils by 12, 46-34.

Kanab kept it close most of the game, although Page outscored the Cowboys in each period. The host team led 12-9 after one, but only 26-22 at the break. Page added two points to their lead in the third, to go up by six, 35-29, heading into the fourth quarter. Kanab still had a good chance to pull out the victory, but could only muster five points in the final frame to fall 46-34.

Bate netted 12 to lead Kanab, with Jenson scoring seven and Adams adding six in the low-scoring game.

This week, Kanab plays Fredonia on Wednesday and El Capitan on Thursday in Colorado City. Next week, region action gets underway at Enterprise on Wednesday, January 9, with Kanab hosting Beaver on Friday, January 11.