By JASON EPP
Leader & Times
TURPIN, Okla.-A big, physical, and fast Laverne Tiger team, fresh off of a state championship in football last Saturday rolled into Turpin for their first game on the hardwood, and defeated the Cardinals 67-38.
Turpin trailed by ten points early in the second quarter (34-24) when Laverne went on a 16-2 run over a five minute span of the third quarter to put the game out of reach, 50-26.
"They pressed us; they were bigger than us, faster than us and they shot it pretty well for their first game out," Cardinals coach Gary Wallace said. "Their big guy inside gave us trouble too."
Laverne relied on a deep bench to allow them to pressure the Cardinals into turnovers mainly in the frontcourt as they extended their defense all the way to halfcourt. They also relied on a very physical style of play.
"They banged us pretty good coming off screens, and a lot of times those are fouls," Wallace said. Our guys let that get them frustrated."
The closest Turpin would get from that point on was 15 points.
In the first quarter, Matt Young hit a three to bring the Cardinals within one point (8-7), but a 13-5 run by the Tigers made the score 21-12.
Turpin cut the lead to five with four minutes left before half, but Laverne answered with a 9-1 run.
Jordan Lujan's (17 points) three with six seconds left in the half kept the Cardinals within striking distance, 30-20, at half.
"I like that were starting to run our offense better and see the open looks," Wallace said. "But we've got to improve in all aspects-more consistency on defense, and offensively, we still have to work on fundamentals."
Turpin (1-7) is off for the Christmas break, but will return to action Jan. 9th at 4:30 when they take on Mooreland in the first round of the Oil Center Classic Tournament in Woodward.