By JASON EPP
Leader & Times
Forgan’s Jace Kerr stole the ball from a Laverne ballhandler, broke into the open court, and finished the play with an emphatic slam. Just seconds later Kerr did the same again to cap a 15-3 run by the Bulldogs that left Laverne with nothing to do but call for a timeout. Forgan cruised the rest of the way for a 71-46 win over the No.7 Tigers in the championship of the Buffalo Invitational.
“I was really pleased with the way our guys responded to the challenge,” Bulldogs coach Todd Kerr said. “That’s a really good basketball team.”
The two things I would point to, as the difference in the game was the way we were able to guard them. They were very talented offensively, and I thought we did a great job making them work for shots. The other thing was, we were really hard to guard because we were so balanced offensively. It makes it tough when you’re able to do that.”
Forgan was balanced with four players reaching double figures and several others contributing as well. Jace Kerr finished the game with 16 points, Demetrius Alston finished with 15, Luis Ordonez 14, and Chandler Bryer added 14.
It had been a tight game in the first half. The two teams were knotted at 13 with a minute left in the first quarter. An 8-0 run keyed by a pair of threes by Demetrius Alston, put the Bulldogs up 21-13, but Laverne battled back using the 3-point line, and cut the lead back to three with 2:55 left and again with 11 seconds left in the second quarter.
Chandler Bryer scored at the buzzer to put Forgan up 32-27 at half.
With Forgan leading 35-31, early in the third quarter the Bulldogs big run started.
Kerr scored a basket, and then Chandler Bryer made a pair of free throws after Laverne was called for a technical. Alston made the lead ten with a basket, but Laverne’s Trevor Harris hit his third three to cut it back to seven.
Kerr hit a pair of free throws, then with just over three minutes left in the third Forgan scored three times in a span of forty seconds. Chandler Bryer hit a three, then the back-to-back steals and baskets by Kerr put Forgan up 50-34 with 2:34 left in the quarter.
“I think we stayed the course and make some plays and get our kids excited,” Kerr said about the 15-3 run.
Out of the timeout, Laverne settled down on offense, but still could not get the defensive stops they needed.
Kerr got a rebound and put it back at the third quarter buzzer to put the Bulldogs up 56-42.
Forgan scored at the buzzer in the first three quarters.
Forgan held Laverne to just two points in the fourth quarter to put the game away.
No.1 Forgan (17-0) will travel to Southwestern Heights Tuesday.