Douglas cruises in season-opening win
After struggling slightly to find a rhythm in the first quarter Thursday night, the Douglas boys’ basketball team exploded for a 21-2 run in the second quarter on its way to an impressive 94-53 season-opening win over Soquel High School out of Santa Cruz, Calif. in the first round of the South Tahoe Invitational.
Every active player on Douglas’ roster scored and the Tigers simply ran away with the second half as the high altitude began to take its toll on Soquel.
The Tigers went on a 10-0 run to open the second half and outscored Soquel 49-24 to close out the game.
Things got off to a rocky start as Douglas committed a flurry of turnovers and standout center Keith Olson was called for two quick fouls while Soquel built an 8-2 lead.
Unfortunately for Soquel, it found out Olson isn’t the Tigers’ only big threat in the middle as Joe Nady came off the bench to score six points in the first quarter while Olson sat.
Nevertheless, Soquel built a 16-15 lead by the end of the first. Their coach employed wholesale substitutions, much in the style of an ice hockey game, where he’d rotate four or five players at a time in order to keep the team’s legs fresh.
What he couldn’t account for, however, was Douglas’ superior size.
Olson came back out to start the second quarter and hit three consecutive baskets to spark the 21-2 run.
Nady and Olson each finished with 14 points for the game. Defensively, Olson had four blocked shots.
Point guard Mike Gransbery had a solid debut, scoring 13 points including two 3-pointers and perhaps the biggest surprise of the evening was Brandon Bernard scoring 11 points.
Bernard saw mostly limited action last season but came off the bench Thursday night to contribute a personal 7-0 run in the second quarter with a 3-pointer of his own.
He also had a number of outstanding hustle plays and made a nice over-the-shoulder catch on a lob pass while on a breakaway.
Gransbery and Jared Trowbridge played extremely well running the offense against Soquel’s full-court trap defense. Trowbridge, who finished with five points, had a number of nice assists in the game.
Sophomore James McLaughlin had a solid varsity debut, scoring nine points, including a 3-pointer.
Sophomore Ross Bertolone, also playing his first varsity game, was also effective at point guard against Soquel’s press and scoring two points of his own.
David Laird scored eight points, Kevin Emm put up six, Ryan McPeek had five, Jeff Nady had four and Nate Whalin rounded out the scorecard with two points.
As a team, Douglas was outstanding from the free-throw line hitting 21 of 25 shots.
Douglas takes on El Camino out of California tonight (Friday) at 6:15 p.m. at South Tahoe.
— Joey Crandall can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or at (775) 782-5121, ext. 212.