Tyler Hildebrandt, a Moffat County High School junior, shoots over a Delta defender Friday at MCHS. The MCHS boys varsity basketball team played strong, head coach Eric Hamilton said, but Delta’s quick-firing offense was too much to handle in a 73-58 loss.

Photo by Joshua Gordon

Tyler Hildebrandt, a Moffat County High School junior, shoots over a Delta defender Friday at MCHS. The MCHS boys varsity basketball team played strong, head coach Eric Hamilton said, but Delta’s quick-firing offense was too much to handle in a 73-58 loss.

MCHS boys basketball plays tough in 73-58 loss to Delta

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MCHS Boys Basketball vs. Delta

MCHS Boys Basketball vs. Delta

MCHS Boys Basketball vs. Delta

Results ...

Box score from the Moffat County High School boys varsity basketball team’s game Friday against Delta High School:

(Team — 1st — 2nd — 3rd — 4th — final)

• Moffat County — 11 — 18 — 12 — 17 — 58

• Delta — 15 — 21 — 22 — 15 — 73

MCHS leading scorers:

(Name — points)

• Colby Haddan — 15

• Andy Browning — 9

• Braeden Sullivan — 8

• Taft Cleverly — 8

The Moffat County High School boys varsity basketball team played themselves into a hole numerous times Friday at home against Delta.

But, more than once, the Bulldogs played their way back to within a few points.

However, Moffat County’s defense struggled to contain the explosive Panthers’ offense in a 73-58 loss.

“I thought we played great,” head coach Eric Hamilton said. “We had a ton of outstanding performances and the guys played with guts against a very good Delta team.

“It was a fun, exciting game to be part of and we came so close to getting an upset and a big win.”

The Bulldogs (3-10 overall, 1-3 Western Slope League) struggled out of the gate with turnovers as Delta took a 10-4 lead, but a combination of lay-ups and jump shots brought the team within four, 15-11, at the end of the first quarter.

In the second quarter, the Panthers (10-5 overall, 3-2 WSL) used quick shots to build a 10-point lead, but again

the Bulldogs fought back and junior Tyler Hildebrandt nailed a lay-up to pull within one at 27-26.

But, Delta continued their game plan of hitting quick jumpers in the second half and pulled out to a 46-32 lead early in the third quarter.

Hamilton said his team struggled with rebounding and made too many little errors.

“(Delta) killed us in offensive rebounds and that led to a lot of points for them,” he said. “They were a good enough team that they capitalized on our little mistakes and we would have had to play almost perfect to beat them.”

Hamilton said the Bulldogs played tough defense, but Delta had too many players who could pull up and make jump shots from almost anywhere on the court.

“If you go guard someone who is making shots and leave another guy open, he would make it,” he said. “It is tough to guard that many good shooters and (Delta) did a great job of moving the ball and getting their shots to fall.”

Senior Colby Haddan scored 15 points to lead the Bulldogs and fellow senior Andy Browning scored nine.

Senior Braeden Sullivan and sophomore Taft Cleverly each added eight points.

Offensively, the Bulldogs scored double-digit points in each quarter, but Hamilton said the team didn’t shoot well as a whole.

“I don’t think we were patient and didn’t work for the shot we needed to take,” he said. “I think we are so young, that when we get down, one guy thinks he needs to bring us back when we need to slow it down and use the whole team.”

The Bulldogs will look to rebound at 3:30 p.m. today when they battle Palisade at home.

Hamilton said despite the loss, the guys played a great game Friday and can use the momentum today.

“I think everyone is a little proud with what we did (Friday),” he said. “Palisade will play similar to Delta, so we just need to keep our heads up and get out there and compete”

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