Galena boys basketball cruises to 85-71 win over Bonita Vista

RENO - Before Thursday's boys basketball game between Bonita Vista and Galena, Grizzly coach Tom Maurer said he didn't know much about the Barons.

"I knew they had a good tradition down in San Diego," Maurer said. "And I knew they played similar to St. Ignatius."

Knowing that, Galena should've been in trouble since the Lancers beat the Grizzlies 64-20 last Saturday with an up-tempo style on offense and an intense pressure defense.

"Within three seconds after we scored, they (St. Ignatius) were already on our end of the floor going up for a shot," Maurer said.

But in the opening minutes on Thursday, it was clear that Bonita Vista wasn't St. Ignatius. Galena held the Barons to 25 percent shooting in the first half and Maurer used all 15 of his players for the first time this season as the Grizzlies (3-2) rolled to a 85-71 victory.

12 different Grizzlies scored, including Joe Heaton, who was the only player in double figures with 20 points.

"I got to play all the kids for the first time all season," Maurer said. "That helps because it gives me a chance to see which players fit in where."

Galena never trailed in the game as they jumped out to an 18-7 lead after the first quarter. Bonita Vista made only one field goal in the first.

Then in the second quarter, the Barons' Hector Dominguez came out firing, scoring six of his team-high 20 points as Bonita Vista trailed 37-27 at half-time.

In the third quarter, the game turned sloppy, especially for Galena, who committed nine of its 18 turnovers in the quarter.

"If we want to be a good team, a championship team, then we have to take better care of the basketball," said Maurer, who assessed penalties for players this week in practice who turned the ball over.

Against St. Ignatius, Galena committed 34 turnovers.

"During Monday's practice, I had the kids do five push-ups for every turnover or if they failed to block out,"Maurer said. "I swear Sam Sikes must have done 300 push-ups that day."

It worked for Tuesday's game, when the Grizzlies beat Reno 57-53 in overtime. But against Bonita Vista, Galena coughed up the ball a lot more. So despite the win, Maurer thinks his team regressed.

"We reverted back to how we played in the first game of the season against Douglas," Maurer said. "We didn't close down passing lanes and if you don't do that against the better teams, you're going to get beat.

In the fourth quarter, the Barons, who Maurer thought might tire because of the altitude, played even stronger. Bonita Vista scored 29 points in the fourth, most of them on fast breaks started immediately after a Galena basket.

"The altitude didn't effect them because we allowed it not to," Maurer said. "We put them on the free throw line and that gives them a chance to rest. We have to keep the clock running to wear a team out. And we didn't do that."

Sikes' 3-pointer with 5:47 left in the game gave Galena a 25-point lead, its largest of the game. Bonita Vista outscoring Galena 27-16 the last five minutes of the game.

"Because football just ended, this was their first game of the season," Maurer said. "If we played them after they've played a few more games, it would've been a entirely different game."

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