SEYMOUR — There was no doubt in Bob Nobbe’s mind as to what the difference was in Tuesday night’s Hauser-Trinity Lutheran boys basketball game.
“No question, the difference in the game was turnovers,” the Hauser coach said following the 44-37 loss. “We had us for 23 turnovers, down a little bit from our first couple games. But in a low-scoring contest like this, maybe a little more of a defensive battle, all those possessions become more and more important, and we didn’t do an effective enough job of hanging onto the basketball tonight.”
A rebound basket by Hauser’s Ryan Christy at 6:35 of the third quarter tied the score at 35, but the Jets missed their next eight field-goal attempts, and combined with six turnvoers, those numbers allowed the Cougars to run off 10 straight points to lead the rest of the night.
Hauser’s Trey Shipley made a layup with 45 seconds remaining in the quarter to make it a 40-32 game going into the final period.
The Cougars held onto the ball for much of the fourth quarter, while the Jets fired up a lot of 3-pointers in attempting to get back in the game. As a result, Hauser outscored Trinity 5-4 in the period. Each team made only one field goal in the final eight minutes.
Shipley got off to a good start offensively, making a pair of 3-pointers and a deuce in the first period to help the Jets take an early lead. Trinity then received baskets from five different players to tie the game at 13 at the end of the period.
Twins Mark and Matthew Pinnow both made two baskets in the second period to help the Cougars take a 30-28 lead at the half.
Trinity coach Aaron Rudzinski said he liked the Cougars’ defensive pressure.
“One of the focuses we had was to get out and deflect passes and get in their face,” he said. “We knew they were going to be quick, so we wanted to make sure we pressured them without letting them drive on us too much.”
Nobbe said, “I thought we played very hard. Our defensive effort, particularly in the fourth quarter, was good. I thought we stepped it up and played with more intensity, particularly in the second half, and gave ourselves some chances. We had some good looks. If a couple of 3s go down, maybe the game turns out to be a little different. But if we don’t turn the ball over as much, maybe we’re in a different position and have a little bit of a lead as opposed to playing from behind.
“Sometimes with a young team, you have to go through those growing pains, but at the same time, we just have to do a better job of focusing, a better job of executing and taking care of the basketball,” he said.
Shipley topped the Jets in scoring with 14 points. Craig Stuckwisch and Matthew Pinnow scored nine apiece to lead the Cougars.
Christy topped all rebounders with 10 to help the Jets hold a 32-27 advantage in that department. The Jets made 13 of 43 shots from the floor to 19 of 45 for the Cougars.
Hauser is 0-3 and will face Indian Creek on Saturday. Trinity will take a record of 1-1 to Switzerland County on Friday night.