Multiple Teams · Lady Cougars Keep Play-off Hopes Alive; Nielsen Leads All Scorers In Return for Boys

Chelsie Birchell, setting the tone with strong rebounding vs. P.C.
Chelsie Birchell, setting the tone with strong rebounding vs. P.C.

The Union Lady Cougar basketball team earned its first Region 10 win Tuesday with a victory over the Park City Miners and in so doing, kept their state play-off hopes within reach.

Win-less in Region 10 contests going into the game, the Lady Cougars showed grit and determination from start to finish leading the entire contest. With only seven turnovers in the game, the Cougars turned those possessions into scoring opportunities winning 57-41.

Junior, Paige Farnsworth, led all scorers with 15 points, most of which came from her relentless work on the offensive boards and put back opportunities. Setting the tone early for the Cougars was senior Chelsie Birchell (10 points), rebounding and defending with urgency.

Other Cougars contributing were Lexi Anderson (nine points) and Shayla Draper (12) with their athletic defensive pressure and slashing attacks of the rim, while point guard Katie Ross managed the game with limited mistakes.

Next up, the Cougars travel to Basin rival, Uintah, on Friday, February 6. A win against the Lady Utes will strengthen their chance to qualify for the 3A state tournament scheduled for the end of the month.

Meanwhile, the Union boys also faced a talented Park City Miner team currently jockeying with Uintah for a possible two-seed and a chance to host a first-round play-off game. Union senior, Braden Nielsen–in his return from a hip ligament injury–scored 24 points, leading all scorers. Kyle Hanke tallied 17 points making three 3’s in the 72-57 loss. The Cougar Boys will battle rival Uintah in Vernal this Friday, February 6.