Borah stretches streak to nine games

rroberts@idahostatesman.comFebruary 14, 2014 

Things are coming together for the Borah High boys basketball team, and the Lions’ timing couldn’t be better.

Borah won its ninth consecutive game with a 56-44 victory against Timberline on Thursday night to lock up the No. 4 seed in next week’s 5A District Three Tournament.

It might not sound like a particularly impressive finish for the two-time defending state champions, but it is a far cry from a five-game losing streak the Lions suffered midway through the regular season that dropped them to sixth in the conference standings.

“We’ve had bits and pieces here lately of coming together and playing extremely well and playing at a defensive intensity that we’re looking for,” Borah coach Cary Cada said. “Like any team, we still break down in areas that we need to do better at.”

There isn’t much time left to perfect their play.

Borah (14-6, 12-6 5A SIC) will face Timberline (11-9, 10-8) for the second time in five days in the first round of the district tournament Tuesday. Tipoff is 7:30 p.m. at either Vallivue or Meridian high school. The top four teams from the district tournament advance to state March 6-8 at the Idaho Center in Nampa.

“We have to lick our wounds about this one tonight, but we’ll bounce back and be ready for Tuesday,” Timberline coach Bruce Logsdon said. “(Tonight) was an interesting game because you are going to turn around and play them again. You wonder how much you should show and how much you should keep close to your vest to save for Tuesday.

“It was just a good experience for us if you have to look at it that way, to see what they can do and know that we can’t show up like we did the first half.”

The Lions started off on fire against Timberline, leading by as much as 42-18 near the end of the second quarter, which included a 48-percent shooting percentage from the field and a 13-for-14 outing from the free-throw line.

It was nearly an about-face in the second half, however, as the Wolves held the Lions to 14 points in the final two quarters.

“In the first half we thought we could just roll out the ball and compete with the back-to-back state champs,” said Timberline junior Gibson Berryhill, who scored a team-leading 15 points. “I think we got a wakeup call in the second half and knew that our talent isn’t going to take us as far as our will and just hungriness to go beat the best team in the state.”

Neither team expects the rematch to be easy.

“We just beat them tonight, but we can’t take them lightly because they came all the way back that second half,” said Borah senior Isaiah Wright, who had 20 points and eight rebounds. “…We are going to prepare for them and make sure we don’t overlook them.”

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