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From Tuesday: Comanches lose nail biter to Gruver

January 26, 2012

The Gruver Greyhounds came away from Stinnett with a win Tuesday night in a tight District contest 37-30. The game was fast paced and mostly a defensive battle. Free throws sank the Tribe in the end, with Gruver making thirteen trips to the free throw line in the second half compared to three for West Texas. The Hounds were 14/23 at the line and WT was 2/4 in the third and fourth quarters. That combined with a three point offensive production in the second quarter was the ballgame.

WT came out of the tip off like gangbusters, out hustling the Hounds on both ends of the court. Chase Elliott made a nice jumper from the free throw line and Nathan Forrest sank a sweet turn around jump shot in the paint. A Forrest pass to Justin Holmberg resulted in a bucket under the hoop, and a foul. He sank the free shot to make it 8-4 Tribe. Alex Ramirez made a bucket under the hoop and Holmberg added a lay up. At the end of one, the Comanches led 13-6.

In spite of the lack of points in the second, the Tribe played several minutes of really tough defense. They forced Gruver to take outside shots and they hit two treys and just got two inside the paint. The Comanches couldn't buy a basket. Their only points were a bucket from Ramirez and a free throw by Ty Lay. The score was tied at 16 at halftime.

The game continued to be a defensive struggle in the third period. The Elks scored seven and WT six and the lead changed hands five times. Ramirez, Lay, and Spencer St. Charles each got a bucket for the Tribe. WT made just three turnovers and they forced seven Hound mistakes. The Tribe trailed 23-22 at the end of three.

Gruver edged to a four point lead early in the fourth but Lay got a second chance shot off an offensive board to pull WT back to within two 26-28 with 4:25 in the game. The Tribe finally (with 3:09 in game) got a trip to the free throw line for a one and one shot and Elliott sank both to pull the Comanches to within one 30-29. The Greyhounds made five trips to the free throw line in the double bonus, making 7/10. West Texas committed a couple of turnovers and were forced to foul to stop the clock as valuable seconds ticked away.

Ramirez had nine points and six rebounds. He played most of the fourth quarter with four fouls. Lay and Holmberg scored five each. Elliott had four points and two steals. St. Charles had two points and two steals. Forrest had four points, three boards, and a steal.

The loss give WT a 1-4 District record for the first half of play and an overall record of 17-9.

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