SHINGLE SPRINGS — For most of the first half in its Delta River League boys basketball opener Wednesday, Ponderosa stayed within striking distance of second ranked/undefeated Jesuit.
The Bruins, who cut the Marauders’ lead in the third quarter, lost the contest 69-41 in their first home game in almost two months.
Ponderosa (0-1, 9-8) grabbed eight rebounds and made 7-of-10 free throws in the third quarter for a 44-31 score with 2:41 left after guard Shelby Lee sank two free throws. But the Marauders went on a 6-0 run to end the quarter, increasing their lead to 50-31.
“They were making their shots,” Ponderosa head coach Troy Selvey said. “The good thing for us is that we’re learning to crawl back into games. We’re learning how to deal with adversity. We’re learning to grow as a team.”
Jesuit continued to extend its lead, opening the fourth quarter with a 10-0 run for a 60-31 advantage. Ponderosa made 6-of-8 free throws in the quarter, including 3-of-4 from Conrad Washington, but that wasn’t enough.
“I like to think that we’re getting better,” Selvey said. “Maybe the score didn’t dictate how well we’re doing. I think our kids are continuing to play hard. We’ll continue to fight and give everyone our best shot.”
Behind 18-9 after the opening quarter, Chris Snyder scored off his own offensive rebound to get Ponderosa going but Jesuit (1-0, 17-0) expanded its lead to 21-11 when Nick Hilton canned a three-pointer. The Bruins registered eight rebounds and made 4-of-6 free throws in the second quarter. Overall, the Bruins were 17-of-22 at the line.
Josh Bist and Matt Bejsovec scored nine points each for the Bruins. Snyder followed with six, Richie Munoz four, and Shelby Lee, Washington and Marty Padilla scored three points each. Marcus Forbes and Mitch Milicevich had two points each.
Selvey and the Bruins were happy to play in front of the good size home crowd for the first time in nearly two months.
“It’s nice to be home,” Selvey said. “I thought it was a great crowd. I know our kids were really excited.”
Contact Mike Bush at 530-344-5079 or [email protected] Follow @MBushMtDemo on Twitter.