By JASON EPP
Leader & Times
TURPIN, Okla.— Balanced scoring, inside and out, and tough defense helped the Tyrone Bobcats take down the Turpin Cardinals 65-48, and move to 3-0.
The Bobcats finished with four players in double figures, including a game-high 18 from Nerlin Rivera. William Slater put in 17, Ethan Reece 15, and Tanner Hurst 12. Reece and Rivera each hit three treys apiece, and the Bobcat made eight shots from beyond the arc compared to none for the Cardinals.
Tyrone’s breakthrough came early in the game with two key first half stretches. First with Turpin leading 4-0 midway through the first quarter, Tyrone went on a 10-0 run sparked by a three by Tanner Hurst. Hurst followed that up with a traditional three-point play on the next trip down the floor.
Turpin battled back and cut the lead to just two (14-12) with 6:25 left in the second quarter.
But another 8-0 run by the Bobcats that included back-to-back threes by Reece pushed the lead back to double figures with 4:13 left in the half.
Tyrone got to the free throw line late in the quarter to get their points, making 7 of 9 to finish out the half up 32-20.
Tyrone pushed the lead to 16 early in the quarter, but Turpin began to play at a frantic pace and had their best stretch with 14-7 run that cut the lead back to single digits with 1:42 left in the third.
“They looked a little tired and they had more big guys so I thought it helped us,” Cardinals coach Gary Wallace said. “Plus at this point in the year it’s not going to hurt us to get in better shape.”
Tyrone recovered with a 16-4 run to push the lead to 20 with 3:12 left in the game, and maintained the rest of the way for the 17-point win.
“I thought we had an advantage because this was our third game and their first,” Bobcats coach Clay Witt said. “We started out cold, but some of that was how well they ran their zone. We finally got going and got the ball inside where we wanted it. First few minutes of the fourth quarter were big.”
Tyrone will travel to Boise City Friday. Turpin (0-1) will host the Fowler Goldbugs.