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Silverado defense clamps down on Bonanza

Silverado girls basketball coach Dean Bosch wasted two timeouts during a span of 1 minute, 10 seconds in the second quarter. After the second one, Bosch warned his team they may need the timeouts at the end of the game.

“We just had to remind them that this is probably going to be a close game,” Bosch said. “I didn’t envision us having a 26-point lead.”

The Skyhawks held Bonanza without a point for nearly 12 minutes and coasted to a 44-27 victory Monday in pool play of the Gator Winter Classic at Green Valley.

Monet Salazar had 10 points and four rebounds for Silverado (6-6), which plays Santa Fe Christian (Calif.) for the top seed in Pool A at 9 a.m. today. The tournament continues with bracket play today and Wednesday.

“Our big thing is we’re a pretty good team when we play together and we execute,” Bosch said. “Where we’ve been struggling this year is we get a lead and we kind of forget about the team aspect.”

Alyssa Powers, who led Bonanza (8-5) with 19 points and 12 rebounds, drove the lane and scored with 3:20 remaining in the second quarter to cut the Skyhawks’ lead to 15-10. The Bengals didn’t score again until Brooklyn Savage went 1-for-2 from the free-throw line with 7:38 left in the fourth quarter to make the score 36-11.

Silverado outscored the Bengals 19-0 in the third quarter as Bonanza missed all six of its field-goal attempts and committed seven of its 24 turnovers. The Bengals finished 7-for-37 from the floor overall.

“We’ve been focusing so hard on our offense lately that we’ve been neglecting defense in practice,” Bosch said. “So, we challenged the girls to step up, even though we haven’t spent a lot of time defensively. … I think the third quarter we did a great job of that.”

Deja Siaki finished with nine points and collected seven steals for Silverado, and teammate Rachel Tretina added nine points and four boards. Jessica Chamberlain pulled down seven rebounds as the Skyhawks outrebounded Bonanza 42-36.

Silverado led by 23 points early in the fourth quarter before Powers scored 10 straight for the Bengals, capping the run with a 3-pointer to make the score 37-24 with 4:20 remaining. Her driving basket two minutes later cut the Bengals’ deficit to 40-27, but Silverado scored the final four points.

“That’s kind of been our Achilles’ heel,” Bosch said. “We’ll play real good for stretches, and then we kind of stop playing, give up some leads and then make it a lot closer than it needs to be.”

Contact reporter David Schoen at dschoen@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-5203. Follow him on Twitter: @DavidSchoenLVRJ.

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