High school boys basketball: Poised Pleasant Grove rolls past Timpanogos

Adam Fondren, Deseret News

As Timpanogos High School hosts Pleasant Grove High School in Orem on Friday, Dec. 15, 2017. Pleasant Grove wins the game by a score of 62 to 45.

OREM — Pleasant Grove’s 62-45 win over neighboring Timpanogos on Friday night was extremely satisfying for coach Randy McAllister for a multitude of reasons.

It featured a breakout game from sophomore Kael Mikkelsen, the team’s best showing of the season on the offensive glass and perhaps most importantly the players showed poise against the press.

In Pleasant Grove’s only loss this season two weeks ago it squandered a 20-point lead as it really struggled to deal with Bountiful’s pressure defense.

“Our guys were so disappointed with how they fell apart against that pressure, and they knew they were going to see the same type of pressure tonight. Not as quick, but longer,” said McAllister.

His team did a phenomenal job handling Timpanogos’ pressure as it only turned the ball over seven times in a game it was always in control of.

The Vikings led 17-7 after the first quarter, 32-18 at halftime and stretched it to 52-29 heading into the fourth quarter. Watching his team keep their foot on the gas in the third quarter, knowing Timpanogos would come out with a ton of energy, was particularly satisfying for McAllister.

“We were prepared. We told them, if you thought the first half was pressure, now they’re going to extend it, and they’re going to come get you,” said McAllister. “I told them our advantage is speed and quickness, and theirs is length. You guys just gotta just beat their length. … use your fake, go by them and throw it ahead.”

Pleasant Grove’s largest lead was 24 points late in the third quarter. Timpanogos whittled it to 14 points on a couple occasions midway through the fourth quarter, but the Vikings slowed the game from there by extending possessions instead of taking quick 3-pointers.

A big catalyst to Pleasant Grove’s dominant first three quarters was its tenacity on the glass. It…

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