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Morant, Tuss combine to lead Sunset to blowout win over Sunrise all-stars

Bishop Gorman’s Demetris Morant and Durango’s Joe Tuss were Southwest League rivals during the high school basketball season.

They showed Saturday how dangerous they can be on the same team.

Morant scored 18 points and Tuss 17 to lead the Sunset Region to an 81-59 rout of the Sunrise in the Senior All-Star Game at Tarkanian Basketball Academy.

“I didn’t want to play at first because I didn’t want to get hurt,” Morant said. “But I just thought, I didn’t get hurt all season, why get hurt today? So I just played careful and made sure that I didn’t get hurt.”

It was hard to tell if Morant was taking it easy. The 6-foot-9-inch UNLV signee threw down four alley-oop dunks off lobs from Gorman teammate Ben Carter, who has signed with Oregon.

“(Carter) just knows when to throw it, and I’m going to get it,” Morant said. “He can throw it so high, no one else can jump up there with me to get it.”

Tuss, who has committed to Air Force’s prep program, made five 3-pointers.

The Sunrise trailed 46-26 at halftime and struggled to keep up with the Sunset, which had five players committed to Division I programs.

Legacy guard Zach Lane scored 11 points, and Palo Verde center Michael Buchanan had eight points and seven rebounds for the Sunset.

Desert Pines forward Thomas Hooper led the Sunrise with 15 points, and Valley post Caleb Carter chipped in 11 points.

In the earlier Senior Exhibition Game, Desert Pines’ Olajuwon Diggs scored 27 points to lead the Sunrise to a 67-62 win over the Sunset. The Sunrise, which had only five players, got 16 points from Desert Pines’ Najee McIver, 13 points from Canyon Springs’ LaDarrell Mongkholtham, and five points and 19 rebounds from Canyon Springs’ Nick Scott.

Cheyenne’s Jamal Peterson paced the Sunset with 12 points in the exhibition.

Gorman swingman and UCLA signee Shabazz Muhammad was unable to play in the event because NCAA rules allow seniors to play in two all-star events. Muhammad played in the McDonald’s All-American Game and Jordan Brand Classic, and got an exemption to play for Team USA in the Nike Hoop Summit.

Contact reporter Tristan Aird at taird@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-5203. Follow him on Twitter: @tristanaird.

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