ROCK SPRINGS – Western Wyoming Community College narrowly beat to Real Salt Lake Academy on Thursday night, Jan. 13, by the score of 87-84.

Western Wyoming Community College had the lead early, but the first half mostly belonged to Real Salt Lake Academy. They held the largest lead of the game at 36-26. Western Wyoming Community College sophomore Trevor Trost helped to keep the game close and poured in 14 points in the first half. Trost also shot 50% from the field in the first half. Unfortunately, Real Salt Lake took the lead into the second half, 44-36.

In the second half, the game saw 10 lead changes and Real Salt Lake Academy was able to grab an 11-point lead. The Mustangs refused to give up as they fought their way back and had a big second half in which they scored 51 points. The Mustangs were able to win a close one by the score of 87-84.

Freshman guard Andre Cruz and Trost both shared the game high of 23 points.

Despite having multiple kids out because of COVID and injuries, head coach Steven Soza isn’t making any excuses.

“I’m proud of the kids because they restructured the offense and defense, but we haven’t been able to practice with a full team since the middle of November. These kids are resilient, and they find a way to win. I give credit to Real Salt Lake because they’ve gotten better. We scrimmaged them in October and beat them by 30 points. Whatever they are doing down there is working because they are tougher, shoot the ball better and just make the right plays.”

The Mustangs will play Real Salt Lake again tomorrow, Jan. 14, at 4 p.m. and Soza is expecting a similar type of game.

“Probably going to be another dog fight,” Soza said with chuckle. “I may have worn out a few of my players but tomorrow I get Charlie Harris Jr and Tre Pierce back. All in all, this Is what I wanted: To play a well-coached team before conference play.

Soza’s final words were to give credit to freshman guard Lain Mitchelson, who finished with 15 points and hit three huge three pointers in the game.

“He’s tough as hell,” Soza explained. “I’d take him 100 out of 100 times. He comes in and keeps his mouth shut and works his tail off. All the success he had in high school is starting to carry over because he works harder than most.”

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