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First Quarter Drought Dooms JV Cougars
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Coming out with very little energy, a slow start doomed Escalon's JV basketball boys in their game with Hilmar on Tuesday, Dec. 23.

They were on the road for their only game of the Christmas holiday week and managed just two points in the opening quarter.

"We just didn't have any energy, no intensity," admitted coach Nate Bartelink. "We just didn't show up."

Down 15-2 after the first quarter, Bartelink said his players couldn't buy a bucket in the first eight minutes, putting them behind from the very start.

"We outscored them 15-13 in the second quarter but didn't make up much ground," he said. "We outscored them again 20-12 in the third."

Trailing just 40-37 entering the final frame, the Cougars by that time ran out of gas.

"We spent so much time and energy trying to catch up," Bartelink said.

The Cougars did actually take the lead at one time, battling back from the early deficit, but ran out of steam and watched as the Yellowjackets doubled up on them in the fourth quarter to seal the win.

"We just didn't have enough to close it out," he said.

Dominic Louro had 19 points in the loss, while Steven Martinez had seven points and nine rebounds. Colton Smith and Logan Stewart added six points apiece.

The boys were scheduled to be busy over the New Years holiday as well, playing in games Monday and Tuesday, wrapping up an appearance in the Atwater Tournament with a game today, Wednesday, Dec. 31. Look for the tournament wrap up in the Jan. 7 issue of The Times.