Enterprise Bobcats blister Fort Rucker Bulls with bullying press
February 4, 2010
FORT RUCKER, Ala. -- With the Fort Rucker Bulls nipping at their heels, Enterprise Bobcats head coach Jeff Warren turned on the defensive pressure to grab a bigger lead Jan. 28.
The move worked as the Bobcats forced 19 Bulls turnovers in the second half, leading to a 72-31 shellacking at the Child, Youth and School Services Gymnasium in 13- to 18-year-old play.
"After halftime, (our team) started performing like they should. It seemed like they woke up," Warren said. "We press a lot and do well with it. It changed the game."
The game remained in question throughout the first half. The Bobcats (3-2-1) rushed out to a 10-1 lead, but the Bulls (1-7) countered with a 13-3 spurt. Savoris Ivy canned three treys to fuel the run, which gave the Bulls a 14-13 lead with 33 seconds left in the first quarter.
Jamerion Moon answered with a basket with 15 seconds left, and the Bobcats led 15-14 after one quarter of play.
The Bulls jumped ahead 16-15 with a pair of free throws, but the Bobcats displayed a sign of things to come with about four minutes left in the half. Warren switched to a press, which resulted in several Bulls turnovers and Bobcats baskets. The Bobcats led 21-16 after a Ricky Knight score with 3:34 left in the second quarter.
Marcus Rucker countered for Fort Rucker with five unanswered points, tying the game at 21 apiece at halftime.
The Bobcats raced out to a 25-21 lead, but Rucker pulled the Bulls to within one with a bucket with 5:46 left in the third stanza.
The Bobcats' full-court press, though, proved too tough as the Enterprise squad scored 16 unanswered points. They led 45-25 after three quarters.
The fourth quarter was much the same as the last half of the third as the Bobcats outscored the Bulls 27-6 in the final period.
"We lost intensity and hustle," Bulls head coach Derrick Daniels said. "They played four quarters. We played two."
Rucker said his team lost confidence and became frustrated after the Bobcats switched to the press.
"We had the game. When we started getting pressed, we couldn't control the ball," he said.
Daniels said the team has seen the press plenty of times but must learn to handle it better.
"We've got to be in position to execute so we can rush the lanes," he said.
Tyler Warren led the Bobcats with 21 points and five steals. Corey Murray added 11 points, and Cordero Hixson contributed 10 in the win.
Ivy led the Bulls with 12 points and four steals. Rucker added nine points and 19 rebounds, while Trevor Estrada contributed eight points and six rebounds in the loss.