by Jerry Melrose
At the genesis of the new season, head coach Dustin Cox shared his philosophy of the game:
“There is a time for training and a time for trusting. The time for training is in practice. The time for trusting is in games. As coaches we need to help the players trust their training, as well as the hard work they put in at practice. We need to believe in them and let them execute on the court.”
Karlie Jacobs, junior guard in this ‘position-less’ scheme, observed, “at games we need to ‘trust our training’ and at practice we need to ‘train our trusting.’ Right now, we’re just kind of training our freshmen and working together.”
Coach Cox pointed out, “we follow the principle of what’s called ‘the fist.’ It’s that each finger on a hand has a job. And when you’re by yourself as an individual, you’re not as strong as when you close those fingers and make a fist. You’re strong, firm and well-rounded in a way. And so everybody has a job … from our seniors down to our freshmen, or from our freshmen up to our seniors. Don’t want to be down on anybody, right? And I’m just glad that I get to be around them.
“There’re girls who spend a lot of time perfecting a skill of basketball, and they’re getting better and better all the time. From the first time I coached them till now, anytime we step onto that court, we expect to win, be on top, right? Whether the score is in our favor, or not. If we come away, if we execute what we’ve worked on, we’ll hold our heads high and go on to the next one!”
On December 11 and 12, the annual Buffalo Shootout was held without the perennial presence of Monument Valley due to the total shutdown of athletic activities on the Rez. In the scramble to line up competitors, two 2A teams, the Enterprise Wolves (Friday) and the Kanab Cowboys (Saturday) were able to arrange their schedules to accommodate their participation. The Lady Cowboys, even on Saturday morning after whipping Canyon View the night before!
Filling in the tournament were the Parowan Rams (2A), Wayne Badgers (1A) and the Grand Red Devils (2A) from Moab. And, of course, the host Valley Buffalos.
The JV Bracket featured fourth place Grand and third place Parowan, with Wayne winning the Championship over Valley, 36-32.
In light of the Valley Varsity’s 42-35 previous night’s defeat by Enterprise, and that they already recently played Wayne with the prospect of two more conference contests, coach Cox assigned the Varsity Championship to Wayne and newcomer Kanab. Of note, the Lady Cowboys and Lady Rams had already met in the prior week’s 2A Preview. Consequently, the Buffalos took the third place consolation, 46-43, against Parowan. Then Kanab won the championship match, 57-49, over Wayne.
Lady Cowboys’ coach Klint Glover commented, “We weren’t really part of the tournament. They called us to come and play in this game, actually this morning, which is interesting with the Covid situation. You have teams fall in, and fall out. We had a tough time last night with Canyon View; they beat us up pretty good.
“And then this team. They were every bit as physical, and probably quicker. So, I was really impressed with their girls. They played really hard, and wanted it worse for three quarters. We finally woke up. And our defense kept us close, so we could win it in the fourth quarter.”