6A State Tournament: Semifinals Preview

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Arizona

Posted On: 02/19/18 12:16 PM

The 6A state tournament is officially down to 4 teams. Based on the rankings that we released earlier, this was the anticipated final four.

All four of the teams left in 6A are more than capable of winning the state title. It will be a dog fight from this point on. Further, the match-ups are quite intriguing.

6A State Tournament: Semifinals

#5 Mountain Pointe vs. #1 Brophy

Amarion Cash and Khalid Price Mountain Pointe

This game has officially come full circle with Mountain Pointe and Brophy going toe to toe in the first game of the year. In that contest, Brophy walked away with a 1 point win.

These two teams could not have more contrasting styles as Brophy has only scored 60 or more 11 times this season while Mountain Pointe; on the other hand, is averaging nearly 70 points per game and has scored 60 or more 22 times. The last time these two teams met, the final score was 62-61.

This will clearly be a battle of tempos and who can dictate their will on the opposing team. Mountain Pointe will rely heavily on their solid guard play, which will be led by Khalid Price and Amarion Cash. Both of these guards want to push the tempo and create scoring opportunities.

In addition to Price and Cash, Jalen Graham is the game changer in this particular game. He finishes extremely well around the rim and creates a lot of second chance opportunities for Mountain Pointe. His athleticism at the 4/5 spot is unmatched by anyone in this game. Brophy will have to find an answer for him.

While it appears that Mountain Pointe brings an athletic advantage, the wings of Brophy are clearly their strong suit. Jaxson Baker and Ian Burke are long wings who are capable of shooting the basketball extremely well from deep while creating shots for themselves.

As far as guards are concerned, Marques White will have his hands full for Brophy. He will be responsible for controlling the tempo while getting his teammates involved. In order for Brophy to make it to the championship, they will need to exploit their advantage on the wings.

Prediction: While Brophy is the #1 seed who won this same game earlier in the year, they do not have an answer for the active and athletic Graham. Further, the guards of Mountain Pointe are going to be successful in creating an uptempo style of play. Mountain Pointe will prevail in a close game that is in the 60s.

#3 Desert Vista vs. #2 Pinnacle

Desert Vista and Pinnacle have not met up this season. However, both teams will look to play a more up-tempo style of play.

Pinnacle is loaded at every position and likes to use their up-tempo style as a means of exploiting their solid guard play. There aren’t many teams nationally that present the type of guards that Pinnacle has in Spencer RattlerTrent Brown, and Nico Mannion. These three guards make everything go for Pinnacle.

In addition to playing an up-tempo style, Pinnacle thrives on shooting the basketball from deep. Their ability to trade 2s for 3s and play tough defense has aided them in turning close games into blowouts in a slow and methodical manner. While I would not expect a blowout in this one, Pinnacle’s solid style of play forces opposing teams to play mistake free basketball.

While Desert Vista is the more athletic team, they prefer to play more in the half court. They do this as a means of utilizing Christian Anigwe and Wesley Harris. Pinnacle holds the guard advantage. However, Desert Vista does have its own solid guard play in Tyrek Chambers and Alijah Gammage.

Further, they have the advantage in the front court with Harris and Anigwe. Pinnacle is extremely well-coached and has skilled bigs. However, they do not have the same length and athleticism that is possessed by the bigs of Desert Vista.

Prediction: Although both teams want to get up and down the court, the deciding factor in this game will be whether Pinnacle is able to create a faster tempo by trading 2s for 3s. Pinnacle will take this one due to their top tier guard play.