Going into the fourth quarter, the Runniní Indians basketball team was playing its best basketball so far this season.
Three solid quarters of timely scoring, defense, energy and high intensity were exhibited and expected to continue throughout - unfortunately, that turned out not to be the case.
Boca Raton (Fla.) Community Bobcats beat the Runnin Indians, 69-52, in the opening round of the Lions Club Annual Basketball Tournament in Cedar Hill Thursday afternoon.
The game featured several double-digit runs in which the Bobcats had the final and crucial one.
With the score 48-51 with seven minutes remaining in the game, the Bobcats ended the game on 18-4 run resulting in the Runniní Indians suffering their sixth loss of the season.
"They went on a run and we just couldnít recover." Coach Gaylor said. "In the fourth quarter, they showed zone and we became impatient on the offensive end."
Part of the reason for the fourth quarter collapse was due to the Bobcats imposing an aggressive 2-3 zone defense that put a stop to the drive penetration the Runniní Indians had utilized successfully early on.
This resulted in freshman point guard Anthony Anderson doubling the Running Indians point total in the fourth quarter 8 to 4. Anderson ended with a game-high 26 points.
During the first three quarters the Runniní Indians were displaying everything Coach Gaylor had envisioned for his team.
"We came out with good intensity for the first three quarters," Coach Gaylor said. "I was proud of their effort."
The efforts of Gary Mason, Jr. (19 Points) and Jamison Sterns (19 points) provided the Runniní Indians with scoring from the inside and outside.
After taking a 1-0 lead at the start of the game, the Runniní Indians did not regain the lead until a layup by junior forward Derek Koch capped an 8-0 run resulting in a 15-14 lead at the end of the first quarter.
In the second quarter, sophomore post Relus Chance provided a spark off the bench. Chance scored 4 points and grabbed a couple of contested rebounds to continue the Runniní Indian run from the previous quarter.
"He did a great job coming off the bench for us," Coach Gaylor said in response to Chanceís efforts.
A 3-pointer by Anderson ended the Runniní Indians 11-0 run and jump-started the Bobcats attempt at coming back. A tip in and a 3-pointer by senior shooting guard Colby Wohlleb (21 points) continued its 8-0 run.
A drive to the basket by Sterns tied up the game 22-22 and ignited another double digit run.
Once again, Anderson made a 3-pointer to end the Runniní Indians run. Both teams would trade baskets resulting in a 34-27 halftime score.
In the third quarter, Mason took over, scoring ten points to keep his team in the game. A highly contested third quarter ended with a blocked three-point attempt by Sterns to secure a 46-46 tie going into the fourth quarter.
"We lost the intensity we had early in the game," Coach Gaylor said, reflecting the cause of defeat.
"I hope we can learn from todayís game," Coach Gaylor said. "We must continue to play the way we did for the first three quarters and learn from the mistakes we made in the fourth."
Coach Gaylor hopes the lessons learned in the first game of the tournament will provide his team with what they need to have a successful season.
"We have 2 or 3 more games to play here and 2 more next week before district starts," Coach Gaylor said. "We are gradually getting to where we want to be as a team."
Runniní Indians to play in consolation finals
The Runniní Indians used wins over Seguin and O.D. Wyatt to gain a berth in the consolation finals of the Cedar Hill Lions Club Annual Basketball Tournament.
For the second game in a row, the Waxahachie Indians faced a much taller team, however the Tribe responded by playing four quarters of good basketball with a 69-39 win over the Seguin High School Matadors.
Behind a 29 point second quarter outburst Hachie led 39-22 at the intermission.
Three players hit double figures for The Tribe: Jamison Sterns (18), Dominique Carson (14) and Gary Mason Jr. (13).
The Tribe then scored 20 points in the fourth quarter to seal the victory.
In the Friday nightcap for Waxahachie, the Indians held on to outlast Fort Worth O.D. Wyatt 60-58.
The Tribe jumped out to a 2-0 led when Dominique Carson stole the ball from Wyatt guard Mydell Loner and zipped a pass to Gary Mason for the layup.
Wyatt went on a seven point run that ended with a Mason mid-range jump shot.
An offensive rebound and putback resulted in a five point Wyatt lead.
Jamison Sterns drove in for a layup and Detrick Slaughter drained a 3-pointer to knot the game at 11.
Ryan Wilson hit the back end of a pair of charity tosses to give Hachie its second lead of the game.
Justin Rogers, who led all scorers with 17 points, picked that moment to hit a 3-pointer to give his team a 14-12 lead.
The first quarter ended with Relus Chance knocking down two free throws to tie the score once again.
The Tribe came out in a zone defense to start the second quarter. The Indian aggressiveness quickly bore fruit as Wyatt forced up four consecutive long shots that resulted in long rebounds for Hachie.
With the score 23-16, Waxhachie increased its lead when Mason grabbed an offensive rebound and laid the ball off the glass for the easy bucket.
Back-to-back treys from Kevin Ingram and James Wooden cut the deficit to 25-22 as Wyatt surged back late in the second quarter.
Wooden added another trey before the horn sounded, but Hachie responded with a pair of free throws from Carson and a layup from Sterns as Hachie took its 29-25 lead into the locker room.
The second half began with each team committing a turnover. Then Wooden hit a layup to cut the deficit to two points.
Sterns hit an NBA 3-pointer only to go to the defensive end to commit a foul.
Wooden hit both charity tosses to make the score 32-29 as O.D. Wyatt kept the game uncomfortably close.
Wilson responded with an offensive rebound and putback to put Hachie on top by five.
Hitting the offensive boards once again The Tribe got a tip in from Sterns and a putback by Carson to go up 38-29.
Sterns added a fast break layup after Roderick Jefferson made the steal and the zip pass. Down by 11 points, Wyatt stepped up its offense with an old fashioned trey when JíArmani Elzy hit the boards for an offensive rebound and bucket, then hit the added charity toss.
Elzy hit on a jump shot and Marcus Turner drove for the layup to make the score 40-36.
Mason drove in for a bucket to stop the Wyatt run.
The final quarter began with The Tribe on top 44-40.
Wyatt scored the first three points before Hachie put up 11 unanswered points.
With 5:03 to play, Ingram finally ended the Wyatt draught by raining in a pair of free throws to make the score 55-45.
Jefferson hit a free throw and Carson hit a trey to inflate the Waxahachie lead to 59-45.
Justin Rogers laid in two points for Wyatt and with 3:20 to play in the game Detrick Slaughter hit the back end of a pair of free throws. The point was the last one in the game for Waxahachie, as Indian fans watched in disbelief when the 13 point lead evaporated.
Kareem Lyn hit a layup to start the Wyatt comeback.
Four consecutive offensive rebounds on one trip down the court ended with a putback by Rogers.
Hachie commited a turnover and Wyatt immediately returned to the aggressor. A pair of offensive rebounds by Wooden resulted in missed shots. But, Elzy dragged down another board for a putback and with 2:09 to play the Indians lead was cut to seven, 60-53.
Both teams had trouble protecting the ball as the clock wound down to 14.5 seconds to play.
Ingram drove in for an uncontested layupto make the score 60-56. Waxahachie then committed a turnover under the Wyatt basket. That allowed Wooden to drive in for a layup with 2.4 seconds left.
Waxahachie did not have to inbounds the ball to hang on for the 60-58 win.
E-mail Anthony at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jim Perry contributed to this story. E-mail Jim at email@example.com.