The Bishop Broncos and Lone Pine Eagles started off their pre-league basketball seasons Tuesday night with a bang.
In a four-game marathon that included boys and girls teams, both varsity and junior varsity, the Lone Pine boys won and the Bishop girls won.
Final scores: Boys varsity, – Lone Pine 78, Bishop 58; Girls varsity – Bishop 40, Lone Pine 35; Boys junior varsity – Lone Pine 51, Bishop 46; Girls junior varsity – Bishop 40, Lone Pine 15.
The Lone Pine Golden Eagles got on the board first with a 3-pointer, a quick indication of the Eagles’ fast-paced game plan.
Bishop settled into the game after an early time-out and answered Lone Pine’s aggressive play, pulling to within two-points at 12-10.
The first quarter ended with at 15-10, Lone Pine lead.
The Eagles’ accuracy from the free-throw line put Lone Pine ahead 22-14 early in the second quarter.
Both teams showed their accuracy with an exchange of 3-point shots, but Lone Pine’s consistency under the boards moved the score to 43-25 at the half.
The Eagles’ Robert Hunter, Umberta Romero and Neil Bhakta all hit the net for 3-pointers.
Lone Pine controlled the ball for the first minute-and-a-half of the third quarter, but failed to score.
Both teams nearly matched point for point, but the Eagles moved ahead 59-38 at the end of the quarter.
The Eagles’ Hunter went on a tear early in the final quarter, but was answered by a fired-up Bishop team. Bishop drew to within 12-points at 68-56 with 3-pointers from Cy Soctt and Anthony Tucker.
Lone Pine’s lead was too great and the time too short. The game ended with a 78-58 win for the Eagles.
With eight Bishop basketball players still wearing cleats, pads and helmets, Broncos’coach Jon Michener, was pleased with what he saw at Tuesday’s game.
“We’ll get stronger,” he said. “We were aggressive and got stronger as the game went on. We’re just a step slow on defense and erratic on offense but we’ll grow from here.”
The game against Lone Pine was the first scrimmage of the season for the Broncos. “We haven’t had enough guys for a scrimmage,” Michener said. “We don’t have most of our team, but Lone Pine played a good game, they shot well. They just beat us.”
Bronco high scorers were Anthony Tucker with 19 points, Cy Scott, 14 and Alex Barlow with 11.
The Bishop Lady Broncos’ aggressive defense dominated Lone Pine Lady Eagles in what was a relatively low-scoring but fast-paced game.
Down by nine at the end of the first quarter, Lone Pine fought its way to a 24-24 tie at the third quarter buzzer.
Bishop came back strong in the final 8-minutes of play with nine unanswered points. The Broncos held onto that lead until the final seconds of play when the Eagles racked up five quick points.
Final score: Bishop 40, Lone Pine 35.
“We’re happy to start with a win,” said Broncos coach Gerald Howard. “We were rough, we have to work on the basics, turn-overs and lay-ups, but it’s a good start. We stayed out of foul trouble.”
Lady Eagles coach Sonny Lindsey conceded that Bishop’s program was significantly improved and admitted that his team was struggling offensively.
“We have a lot of talent on the team,” he said, “we just were making mistakes. When the snow melts, we’ll have a good team.”