Desert Vista High School is loaded with talent this season under new head coach Gino Crump and his staff, and after a big performance last week against Chandler High School, and also a good game with Findlay Prep (NV), Desert Vista (5-1) looks to be a front-runner to compete for a state championship this season. The Thunder though looked to be in serious trouble at home on Monday evening, as they faced a very tough and well coached Mountain Pointe team, led by long-time successful head coach Hoseah Graham.
Mountain Pointe looked to be in control on Monday after taking a 34 to 31 first half lead over Desert Vista, but the Thunder would prove their competitive drive as a team - only to pull out a big victory at home.
In the game's second half, 6-foot-6 junior wing Wesley Harris, one of the state's top rising performers, would get things going quickly, as he would convert a basket inside immediately after the half. After a mid-range jumper from 6-foot-10 junior post Steele Bennett, Desert Vista would take back the lead, 35-34, with 5:34 left to play in the third period.
Mountain Pointe (7-4) is a tough team with a good combination of football players and basketball players, providing them with excellent toughness as a team. The Pride would not be intimidated one bit in this match-up on Monday, and the Pride would answer every time the Thunder would counter. Mountain Pointe would take back the scoring lead, 37-35, after a three-pointer from the wing from 5-foot-9 sophomore guard Khlid Price.
Wesley Harris would then finish a nice two-handed dunk in traffic - showing off his superior athleticism. After another transition layup from Harris, DV would take a 43-39 lead with 3:20 left in the period. After a driving layup from 6-foot junior guard Alijah Gammage at the buzzer, DV would take a 50-43 lead in to the fourth period.
With Desert Vista looking to take control of the game, Mountain Pointe would cstorm back in the contest. A three-pointer from 6-foot-2 junior Selah Thomas and a layup by 6-foot-5 senior forward Sherman Dedrick would give Mountain Pointe back the lead, 51-50, with 5:30 left to play in the contest.
Desert Vista's 6-foot-5 senior forward Noah Baumann (San Jose State signee) would struggle in the game's first half, but would make his first field goal with 5:20 left to play, a layup inside to give Desert Vista back the lead. A three-pointer from the corner by Baumann late would give DV a narrow 55-53 lead with 4:12 left to play.
Both teams would turn the ball over late, but a three-point play late by 6-foot-8 junior post Christian Anigwe, after a nice assist from Harris, would put Desert Vista ahead 62-57, with :27 seconds left in the game.
After a turnover by Desert Vista late, Mountain Pointe would get one last chance to tie the game at the buzzer, but would miss a three-pointer - losing the game, 62-59, in an exciting contest.
Desert Vista's Wesley Harris would continue his strong play this high schoo lseason - finishing with a game-high 24 points in the victory, while 6-foot-5 senior wing Caleb Simmons would contribute 12 points.
Mountain Pointe would be led by a team-high 15 points from 6-foot-6 senior wing Logan Matulis, 13 points from 6-foot sophomore guard Malik Salahuddin and 11 points from 6-foot senior guard Rahie Hodge.
Desert Vista will now travel to face a talented Red Mountain HS team on Tuesday evening, in another exciting contest.