On a cold and rainy night, there’s nothing like the heat of competition to bring people together, and this Wednesday’s basketball game was no exception.
The Foothill Dragons defended their home against the Cate Rams in a game full of rallies, breakdowns, and comebacks. After four quarters of intense play, the Dragons emerged victorious with a final score of 62-50.
Tyler Ragan-Sutton ‘17 set the tone in the first quarter. He scored the first six points for his team, four of which came from a four-point play. With help from his teammates, Devin Brown ‘17 and Dale Starr ‘17, Ragan-Sutton and the Dragons outscored the Rams 14-8 in the first quarter.
Assistant Coach Anthony Unchangco thought the team “started off really strong.”
The Dragons used the second quarter to expand their lead. A three-pointer by Ragan-Sutton in the first fifteen seconds helped the Dragons remain alert throughout the second quarter. Colin Vallance ‘18 had back-to-back layups to expand the team’s lead to thirteen points.
Trey Gant ‘18 stole the ball with one minute remaining, which led to a fast break layup by Cisco Lomax ‘18. The layup helped the Dragons end the half with a sixteen point lead.
“We [got] on an early run in the first two quarters,” Unchangco said, but after halftime they found it “hard to get back into a rhythm.”
At halftime, Coach Dean Prophet told his players that, despite the score, “the game isn’t over,” but he did not feel his team heeded his advice.
“They came out in the third quarter like they thought [the game] was over and I hope it’s a good lesson for them in the future,” he said.
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Vallance, co-captain of the team, agreed with Prophet.
“We came out of halftime up by a bunch and we kind of thought the game was over, but then they went on a big run,” Vallance said.
Surely enough, the Rams came out of halftime determined to get back in the game. Shot by shot, they chipped away at the Dragons’ lead. Meanwhile, the Dragons struggled to score until Brown made two three pointers midway through the quarter. The Dragons scored only once more and finished the quarter having lost their comfortable lead, the score now 40-39.
Prophet attributes the third quarter’s shortcomings to trouble in defensive transition. Prophet feels that Cate “pushed the ball up pretty well against us,” and that helped them in their third quarter rally.
Although the Dragons struggled in the third quarter, they “didn’t get demoralized,” according to Brown.
Vallance is partially to thank for this, as he was working to keep his team “energized” throughout the game. He focused on “playing hard” and trying to set an example for his team in doing so.
The fourth quarter didn’t start much different than the third, the Dragons still struggled to put the ball through the hoop. Once again, Brown ignited the Dragon offense with back-to-back three pointers.
Coach Prophet said Brown helped the team “finally pick it up again” in the fourth quarter.
Starr followed Brown’s lead, with two consecutive baskets halfway through the fourth quarter.
Nathan Bova ‘19 made two free throws with thirty seconds left to seal away the game.
Vallance was proud of the way his team played for the majority of the time, but thinks the team “needs to work on playing a complete game.”
“We usually have pretty good halves,” he said, “but if we were to play a full game together, that would be really good.”