Cloverdale's boys suffered a hard-fought loss to Tri-West, 73-69, in
overtime Saturday night in a nonconference game.
The Clovers (5-2) took the home-court defeat in stride, recognizing it
was just another step in the journey through the season. They were competitive, a made shot or two from the field or foul line, from winning over the solid Bruins (3-1).
"Any loss you don't enjoy and you'd never better start enjoying them,"
Cloverdale Coach Pat Rady said. "But it's a long season and we've still got
goals to reach and things we can accomplish. You don't want to get caught up in one game.
"Tri-West is a nice club, a veteran club. We got beat by a good ball club
Cloverdale led 36-23 at the half, but Tri-West exploded for 26 points in
the third period to take a 49-47 lead. The Bruins made 8-of-9 from the
floor, including 4-of-5 3-pointers, and were 6-of-6 from the foul
line, in the period.
"Our defense slacked off," Rady said. "It wasn't very good at times and
we gave them too many open shots."
The Clovers took the lead, 51-49, early in the fourth period on Michael
Neese's basket. The Bruins went ahead with five straight points before Kyle
McCammon's 3-pointer tied it at 54.
Tri-West went ahead by three, Cloverdale tied it on a free throw by
Christian Cheatham and two by McCammon. The Bruins' Marco Moses converted a foul shot for a 59-57 advantage with 26.4 seconds remaining in regulation.
Cloverdale's Chase Haltom dribbled through full-court pressure to score a
contested lay-up with 18 seconds left. Tri-West's Tyler Bruce had the last
shot, a 20-foot baseline jumper that missed everything and the game went into
The Clovers jumped out to a 64-59 lead on two free throws and a 3-pointer
from the corner by Haltom.
Tri-West scored the next six points, taking the lead on Moses' fastbreak
lay-up following a Cloverdale turnover.
Haltom put Cloverdale back on top, 66-65, with two free throws at 2:19.
Tri-West's Brandon Robertson tried a shot inside. It was blocked by
Cheatham. The loose ball was scooped up by the 6-foot-1 Moses, who -- seeing
Cloverdale's 6-foot-8 shot-blocking specialist Luke Lovins in his path -- made a reverse lay-up. It was the turning point in a game of pivotal plays, moving Tri-West into a 67-66 lead with 1:45 remaining.
"That was a very important play, maybe the biggest play in the game,"
Tri-West coach Eric Rauch said.
Cheatham missed a jumper on Cloverdale's next possession and Robertson
scored a basket to expand Tri-West's lead to 69-66 with a minute to play.
Haltom's two free throws at 46.4 moved Cloverdale within one. After Moses
missed a shot, Haltom launched a 3-pointer that rattled off the rim and
Robertson rebounded. Fouled immediately at 16.3, the 6-foot-4 junior forward made two free throws to give the Bruins a 71-68 advantage.
Tri-West committed a non-shooting foul on Neese, who still got two
attempts at 9.9 because the Bruins were over the limit. Neese made one to get the Clovers within two.
Forced to foul, Cloverdale put Tylan Thompson on the line at 6.7 and he
made both free throws to put the game away.
Tri-West's players and spectators erupted loudly, considering it was a
nonconference game in mid-December.
"This was a big game for us," Rauch said. "We lost an overtime game to
these guys at our place last year. This is just reversed. They are a very good
team. The (2A) road goes through Cloverdale. It still does. This was a big win
for us. We made plays when we needed to make plays."
Rady understands that teams are ready to play against Cloverdale.
"The two losses we've had, you'd think the teams had won the state," he
said. "Playing us is their big game. They celebrate very enthusiastically.
"It seemed like the ball bounced their way. We had our chances and it
could have gone either way. Now, we have to get ready to play at North Central on Tuesday."
Haltom led Cloverdale with 33 points on 11-of-23 from the field,
including 5-of-17 3-pointers. The 5-foot-9 senior guard was 2-of-9 on
3-pointers in the second half and overtime. McCammon and Neese each scored 10 and Lovins had nine points, five rebounds and three blocked shots.
Moses led Tri-West with 22 points. Steve Ricks contributed 18 and Bruce
14. The Bruins were 9-of-16 on 3-pointers, led by Moses' three.
"Marco Moses was just tremendous," Rauch said. "I don't know what he
averages, but it's around five points a game."
Tri-West 15 8 26 10 14 -- 73
Cloverdale 17 19 11 12 10 -- 69
Tri-West: Thompson 0-2 7-8 7, Robertson 2-7 2-4 6, Bruce 6-12 0-0 14, Moses
6-16 7-10 22, Ricks 8-11 0-0 18, Tanselle 2-3 0-0 6, Tucker 0-1 0-0 0, Totals
24-52 FG, 16-22 FT, 73 TP.
Cloverdale: McCammon 3-11 2-2 10, Trinkle 0-1 0-0 0, Lovins 4-5 1-3 9, Haltom
11-23 6-6 33, Neese 4-6 1-2 10, Cheatham 2-5 1-3 5, Dean 0-2 0-0 0, Blair 1-2
0-0 2, Totals 25-55 FG, 11-16 FT, 69 TP.
3-pt. FG: Tri-West 9-16 (Moses 3-3, Tanselle 2-3, Bruce 2-4, Ricks 2-5,
Tucker 0-1), Cloverdale: 8-28 (Haltom 5-17, McCammon 2-7, Neese 1-3, Cheatham 0-1).
Rebounds: Tri-West 20 (Bruce 6), Cloverdale 17 (Lovins 5). Blocks: Tri-West 1
(Moses), Cloverdale 5 (Lovins 3). Steals: Tri-West 3 (Smith, Bruce, Moses),
Cloverdale 6 (McCammon 2, Cheatham 2). Total fouls: Tri-West 17, Cloverdale 13.
Fouled out: Ricks.
Next game -- Cloverdale plays at North Central Tuesday at 7:30 p.m.