Tigers drop two during basketball season opener

Thursday, December 6, 2012

The Mountain Home Tigers dropped their first two games of the boys basketball season, losing to 5A foes Rocky Mountain and Mountain View.

Rocky Mountain 77

Mountain Home 38

The Rocky Mountain Grizzlies came out firing on all cylinders last Tuesday night and rolled to a 77-38 victory over the Tigers.

The Grizzlies' full-court press forced ten Mountain Home turnovers in the first quarter, and Rocky Mountain hit four of its first five three-point shots as they shot out to a 28-7 lead.

The Grizzlies hit 51 percent of their shots in the first half as they built their lead to 47-15.

The Grizzlies had their biggest lead late in the third quarter at 63-21. It was 66-28 after three.

With the Grizzlies' starters finally on the bench in the fourth, 4A Mountain Home played even with its 5A opponent in the fourth, making it a 77-38 final.

Michael Daniels and Christen Riedel both scored in double figures for Mountain Home. Daniels scored 11 points and the six-foot sophomore transfer Riedel added 10. Doug Long and Tyler Elliott both added six points, Jose Rodriguez scored three and Devin Wright two.

Tiger head coach Brion Bethel thought Rocky Mountain was a tough ball club.

"They passed the ball real well, made some really big shots and their big man hit some tough shots down low," the coach said. "Rocky Mountain is a really good team."

Mountain Home actually shot the ball well, hitting 50 percent of both its three-point shots and two-pointers), but with 28 turnovers their 34 shot attempts were 32 less than Rocky Mountain put up. The Grizzlies hit 10 of 32 treys and a sizzling 65 percent inside the arc.

Mountain View 59

Mountain Home 38

Mountain Home hosted the Mountain View Mavericks Friday night in the team's home opener at Lloyd Schiller Gymnasium, and while the final score may not indicate it, gave the Mavericks a tough ball game before losing 59-38.

After Mountain View scored to take a 2-0 lead, the Tigers went on a 6-0 run to go up 6-2 midway through the first quarter. Mountain Home lost the lead, 10-8, but tied it at 10-10, before a 5-0 run put the Mavericks up, 15-10. Mountain View led 15-12 after a quarter.

Another 6-0 run by Mountain View to start the second quarter pushed its lead to 21-12. The Mavericks led, 28-17, at the half.

Mountain Home was never able to get closer than nine points in the third and trailed 42-30 heading into the fourth quarter.

A 9-2 run by the Mavericks to start the fourth quarter pushed the lead to 51-32. The closest Mountain Home got after that was 53-37, with 4:04 left. The game ended 59-38, Mountain View.

Despite the loss, Coach Bethel thought his young, inexperienced Tigers showed improvement over the Rocky Mountain game.

"Tuesday night was the first game for us, and our guys are getting used to playing man-to-man defense," the coach said. "We've still got some work to do, but they played a full game of man-to-man defense tonight. They were more aggressive, and they trusted in their teammates. We're getting better, but we've still got some work to do."

Jeremy Hopper led the Tigers in scoring with ten points and four assists. Michael Daniels scored nine points, Daniel Calvert and Christen Riedel both scored four, Doug Long and Devin Wright each had two, Tyler Elliott added two points and Jose Rodriguez scored one point.

Mountain Home shot 35 percent (15/43) from the field and missed all four three-point attempts. The team hit eight of 14 free throws for 57 percent.

Mountain View shot 47 percent from the field, hitting four of 12 treys and shot 65 percent from the free-throw line. The Mavericks also dominated the boards 36-16.

Devin Wright led the Tigers with five rebounds.

Mountain Home opens 4A SIC conference play today, Dec. 5, at Skyview and hosts Bishop Kelly on Friday in the conference home opener.

"We've really got to get prepared for Skyview," Coach Bethel said. "I know Skyview's going to come out and want to set the tone for their season just like we are, so we look forward to going over to Skyview Wednesday and giving them a tough game."

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