CLOVERDALE -- Cloverdale's girls' basketball squad moved to within a game of .500 after overcoming a sluggish start to defeat Turkey Run 40-24 Tuesday night.
The Clovers were quick to pressure the Warriors, holding the visitors to three points in the opening frame.
But while the defense was holding Turkey Run, the offense sputtered heavily. Cloverdale only managed to take a 9-3 lead into the second quarter.
Both teams continued to struggle as the Clover defense swarmed Turkey Run but was rarely able to capitalize on the visitors' mistakes and took a 17-8 lead into halftime.
Cloverdale got the offense going in the second half and nearly doubled their halftime output in the third quarter, forcing numerous Turkey Run turnovers and finally getting shots to fall.
Stretching the lead out to 33-16 entering the final frame, both offenses stalled to open the quarter, needing nearly four minutes of play before the first points were scored.
But a comfortable lead through three quarters meant the hosts were able to see out the final frame and pick up their third win of the season.
Cloverdale head coach Matthew Langdon said that despite a sluggish performance, getting a win was important.
"Nothing looked smooth tonight. A win is a win and we'll take that and build upon it. Turkey Run was very scrappy tonight on the defensive end and they wanted the offense rebounds more than we did," Langdon said.
"It just felt like an off night all the way around for us. We're hoping that with a more consistent practice week, we can look a little better going into the Eminence game."
Langdon said that after halftime, the squad started getting steals on defense that led to easy looks and more baskets.
"We get the majority of our points when our defense is playing at a high intensity. We weren't at that level and we weren't ready when deflections would come our way. We committed a lot of fouls by not being in position," Langdon said.
"In the third quarter, we started getting into passing lanes, getting steals and open looks on the end. We didn't make the free throws to push it up to what it should have been and that's another thing to practice this week."
Cloverdale plays Eminence next Monday and Langdon said by then the squad should be back into the normal routine they had been in before the Thanksgiving break.
"We just need to get back in sync with things. We need to shoot a lot, shoot free throws and put the ball back into the girls' hands," Langdon said.
"We've got five days to get back to looking smooth. I thought we had a very good weekend at the county tourney and we're hoping the week of practice will get the girls back in to a rhythm."
Turkey Run -- 3 5 8 8 -- 24
Cloverdale -- 9 18 16 7 -- 40
Turkey Run -- Wood 9, Goddard 5, Bowling 3, Thompson 2, Grayless 2, Awbrey 2, Basan 1.
Cloverdale -- Nally 16 Clark 7, Stevens 6, Gruener 6, Skiles 3, Shrum 2.
Next Game: Cloverdale travels to Eminence next Monday.