OREM — Bingham was touted as the team to beat in the 5A state playoffs leading into tournament play, and after the Miners dispatched Viewmont 70-32 in the first round of the playoffs Tuesday, those same prognosticators won't be swayed.
The Miners put together a defensive clinic, using their superior length to throw the Vikings' offensive attack all out of sorts. With only seconds remaining in the first quarter did Viewmont throw through its first field-goal attempt as Bingham put together a 19-4 lead entering the second.
The Vikings proved a bit more productive in that second quarter, but Bingham didn't let up and led 35-13 at the break.
“We’re at our best when we run and it starts on the defensive end,” said Bingham forward Yoeli Childs. “Like they say, ‘defense wins championships’ and that’s the mentality. No matter what we do on offense, we switch back to defense.”
Childs dominated the paint on both ends — forcing Viewmont to make do from the perimeter while scoring from inside the paint and out on the offensive end. The 6-foot-8 senior finished with 18 points, 11 rebounds and four blocked shots even though he sat out for almost the entire fourth quarter of play.
“I was really proud of him. He was really under control tonight,” said Bingham coach Jake Schroeder of Childs' play. “Obviously he demands the ball and he demands so much attention, but he’s starting to share the ball so well. We’re going to keep riding him and hopefully he’s going to take us a couple of more games.”
The second half went largely like the first with Bingham building on its commanding lead to the point where Schroeder felt comfortable resting his starters for most of the final period.
“With the team we got and the guys we have, it’s a kind of pick-your-poison situation,” Childs said. “If you want to double me or overplay me, I’ll just find the open guy and I trust all of them to hit the open shot.”
Although he only scored seven points, Schroeder was mindful to point out the work of guard Schyler Shoemaker for his defensive effort.
“He’s kind of the glue for us defensively,” Schroeder said. “He guards a lot of guys and he’s been a really good player for us.”
As for Schroeder, Childs pointed out the part he took in preparing the Miners for their first-round matchup.
“I think we were really well-prepared for this game,” Childs said. “Coach Schroeder does an amazing job getting scouting reports and I’ve never seen a coach work that hard."
With the win, Bingham advances to the quarterfinal round where it will take on American Fork at the Huntsman Center on Thursday.