But by the end of the teams’ first High Desert League clash Tuesday night, only the Reed side of the gym ran out of chants and had to revert to football bragging rights when the action became one-sided.
Spanish Springs earned prep boys basketball bragging rights by rolling to a 63-41 victory at Reed.
SSHS coach Kyle Penney came out of halftime with his tie noticeably looser and whatever he said to his team at the break, clearly worked.
“I couldn’t even tell you what we talked about. I was irate,” Penney said of his halftime speech. “We talked about press break because we didn’t execute it at all. We didn’t even have guys in the right spots. We talked about fundamentals and being strong with the ball. They just came and took it out of our hands. We talked about our shot selection. We’ve got transition opportunities and we’re pulling up for seven-footers. That’s the hardest shot in basketball.
“I told the guys I could tell they were scared because they were pulling up for seven-footers when we should be going for layups. It was just a pride thing at halftime. We were winning, but it wasn’t good enough.”
The Cougars held the Raiders to five points in the third quarter, while scoring 11 of their own. That discrepancy increased the deficit to 15 points. Brandon DeLong hit a 3-pointer and scored a putback to tally the final five points of the quarter.
The last four seconds of the third period were a microcosm of the game for the Reed Raiders. After missing both free throws following a Spanish Springs technical, Reed immediately turned the ball over on an errant inbounds pass, leaving the Raiders trailing 41-26 after three quarters of play.
The fourth quarter got worse for the home team. Spanish Springs took advantage of its trips to the charity stripe to build on its insurmountable lead.
With just under a minute to play, Dylan Smith was fouled while making a layup. He finished off the three-point play for the game’s first 20-point cushion, 61-41.
A pair of free throws with 6 seconds left accounted for the final margin.
However, Reed was far from stellar from the line, going 12-of-26. Combined with the lack of presence on the defensive boards, the Raiders could not stay in the game.
“Physically they kind of took it to us early,” Reed boys basketball coach Dustin Hall said. “They got a lot of offensive rebounds and a lot of second chances. They were just putting in layups. I could tell we were a little nervous. It was a good environment and a lot of the kids aren’t used to that environment. They were a little on edge and didn’t come out the way we needed to.”
Reed got off to a slow start early in the game.
AJ Silva provided a spark off the bench when Reed could not find an answer offensively. Over five minutes into the game, Silva erased the goose egg off the scoreboard for the home team by draining a trey, cutting Spanish Springs’ lead down to 9-3 with 2:41 left in the first quarter.
Silva was the only Raider to score in the first quarter, adding a bucket on a drive to the hoop with 20 seconds to go.
The Cougars began and ended their first-quarter scoring with 3-pointers by DeLong, leading to a 12-5 advantage heading into the second quarter.
The second quarter started off well for the Blue and Gold with Gordon Depuy hitting a turnaround jumper.
But Spanish Springs rolled to the next seven points, capped by a Ryan Swanson jumper from the foul line, pushing the gap into double digits, 19-7.
Swanson was responsible for giving the visitors their largest lead of the half thanks to a putback after a pair of missed free throws. That made the score 22-9 with 5:16 to go in the first half.
When Reed went down by a 24-12 score midway through the quarter, it woke up the Raiders. Reed started forcing turnovers and turning them into points.
In a 14-second span, Dylan Raatz scored on a fast-break layup and the Raiders got a steal which ended with a Silva breakaway for a 24-16 score.
After a Swanson putback broke up the run, Reed senior Erik Martinez drove to the hoop and was fouled on his layup. He converted the three-point play and then sank two more free throws 20 seconds later, getting the Raiders to within five, 26-21. That was as close as Reed got the rest of the game.
A pair of Swanson free throws and a layup on a back-door cut sent the Cougs into the locker room with a 30-21 edge. Swanson had 10 of his game-high 20 points in the second quarter.
DeLong added 19 points to the winning cause.
Martinez led all Raiders with eight points.
Spanish Springs (4-4, 2-1 in Northern 4A) returns home Thursday night to face HDL rival McQueen at 7:30 p.m.
Reed (3-4, 1-2) is off until Tuesday when it hosts Truckee at 5 p.m. in a non-league matchup.