Titus Rohrer scored 18 points, Reese Jackson had 15 and Caleb Zuver added 13 as the Bryan boys basketball team opened up the 2019-20 season with a 52-37 victory against the Tinora Rams in Bryan on Saturday.
The game wasn’t going Bryan’s way in the early going. While Bryan (1-0) was dominant on the inside with the 6-foot-8 Jackson and the 6-foot-6 Rohrer, Tinora (1-1) was getting several wide open 3-point looks, and the Rams made six of them in the first half to build a 27-20 lead at the 1:54 mark of the second quarter.
Bryan coach Brandon Fisher called a timeout, and his Bears were able to respond to cut the Tinora lead to 27-26 at the break. Then, in the second half, Bryan continued on what was altogether a 22-2 run to take a 42-29 advantage late in the third quarter.
“I think (Tinora) was doing an excellent job of penetrating on us and kicking,” Fisher said. “I made the wrong call on the rotations, to be honest with you. ... Tinora did a really good job of spreading us out. ... We changed our rotation to make it a little bit different, and we tried to trap a few spots here and there, too, so they couldn’t get in such a good flow.
“The kids were incredible at not panicking in the moment, because you’ve got to give Tinora a lot of credit for driving like they did and hitting all those shots. ... So great job from our kids adjusting, and they turned up the pressure a little bit.”
Tinora’s Marcus Grube and Max Grube each were able to close the third quarter with a pair of 3-pointers, though, and the Bears took a 42-35 lead into the final stanza.
Bryan was able to stave off any Tinora comeback attempt, however, by winning the fourth quarter 10-2 to go on to its season-opening victory.
Bryan earned its victory on Saturday playing just six players throughout the game. At this point, Fisher said he’s still figuring out who he can fit into the rotation, but was proud of how his team fought off any sort of fatigue.
“I thought the coaches on the bench did a nice job of getting the rotations in,” he said. “That was really good where everybody got some rest at different times, and we’re trying to pay attention to matchups as best we can.
“We’ve got some other guys we want to work in, but tonight was a tough one just the way it was kind of a grinder game. ... We don’t want to throw them in the fire and put them in a spot to be unsuccessful. ... We’ll get those other guys in, but tonight I think our guys did a nice job of fighting through it and not letting that tired beat them.”
Bryan continues play at Wayne Trace on Friday.
Bryan 52, Tinora 37
Tinora 8 19 8 2 — 37
Bryan 14 12 16 10 — 52
Tinora: Max Grube 2 3 0-0 13, Willitzer 1 2 1-1 9, Shafer 1 1 2-2 7, Marcus Grube 0 2 0-0 6, Bohn 1 0 0-0 2. Totals: 5 8 3-3 37.
Bryan: Rohrer 8 0 2-3 18, Jackson 6 1 0-1 15, Zuver 2 3 0-0 13, Lamberson 2 0 0-0 4, Dean 1 0 0-0 2. Totals: 19 4 2-4 52.