The Saratoga Sun -

By Mike Dunn 

Tigers tip off season with wins

 

Mike Dunn

Luke Pantle, No. 2, wins the opening tip off against Rock River's C.J. Smith, No. 15, during the Tiger's opening game of the Carbon County Classic on Dec. 11 in Hanna. The Tigers beat Rock River 81-28 and started the season 3-0 against non-conference opponents.

Some games were prettier than others - but any way you put it, the Encampment boys basketball team came out on top in all three of their games this weekend at the Carbon County Classic.

The opening game of the season was hardly a contest for the Encampment Tigers. Despite being undersized, Encampment's full-court man defense dismantled the Longhorn offense - keeping Rock River off the score board for nearly seven minutes in the first and second quarter. The Longhorns had no answer for the Tiger's fast-break offense in a 20-3 second-quarter run.

"We always look for up-tempo offense," Encampment Tiger's head coach Clint Bromley said.

The Tigers continued to dominate in the third and fourth quarter resulting in a running clock. The final buzzer went off with the Tigers beating 1A rival 81-28.

Game two of the Carbon County Classic was anything but a cake walk for the Tigers. Encampment took on Hanna/Elk Mountain/Medicine Bow (HEM) Miner in their opening game Saturday and edged out a 44-33 win.

Despite the victory over the Miners, Bromley said his team could have played a lot better.

"We didn't execute as well as we hoped," Bromley said about the HEM game. "We needed to take control of the boards."

The Tigers wrapped up their weekend with a 83-45 triumph against the Cheyenne South High School Bison freshman squad.

Bromley said the Bison presented some challenges early in the game four for the Tigers.

"You never know what to expect out of a team like (Cheyenne South freshman team)," Bromley said. "And they brought the cream of the crop."

After struggling in the first two quarters, the Tigers played up to their potential in the second half. Bromely said part of their success was due to Guy Erickson's 100 percent free throw percentage, sinking 13 of 13 shots from the line.

The Tigers posted some impressive numbers in the opening games of the season. Notable individual performances include Erickson, who leads the team with an 89 percent free-throw percentage, 26 rebounds and 11 assists, and Luke Pantle, who posted an impressive 20.3 points per game over the weekend.

The Tigers will head to Lingle Friday for the Lingle tournament and will take on Lingle/Fort Laramie, Midwest/Edgerton and Guernsey/Sunrise. Both Lingle/Fort Laramie and Guernsey/Sunrise made an appearance at last year's state tournament. Bromley said he expects every game to be a battle this weekend.

"We are looking forward to playing them," Bromley said. "It's always good to be able to take a look at these teams early."

 

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