By Rob Potter
ROSCOE The first quarter of Friday night’s non-league basketball game between the Tuxedo Tornadoes and the host Roscoe Blue Devils featured scoring runs by both teams.
During the first five minutes, Tuxedo’s Christian Ruiz swished a pair of 3-point shots and made a conventional basket to help his team jump out to a 10-4 lead.
But Roscoe (0-3) answered with an 8-2 run in the next two minutes to even the score at 12-12. Rob Taurino made two 3-pointers to key the Blue Devils’ scoring surge.
Unfortunately for the Blue Devils, that was as close as they would get. Tuxedo scored a basket in the final minute of the first quarter and then outscored Roscoe 19-12 in the second period to take a 33-24 advantage at halftime.
Tuxedo (2-3) pushed its lead into double digits in the second half on its way to a 63-47 victory.
“I think they did a very nice job defensively,” Roscoe Coach Fred Ahart said. “They were keying on Rob Taurino and Jesse Huggins and they did a good job of guarding those two players.”
Tuxedo Coach Marco Margotta noted that his team’s defensive plan was to slow down Taurino in particular.
“He’s a very good ballplayer,” Margotta said. “He made those two 3-pointers in the first quarter. So after that we wanted to really focus on him defensively and make someone else beat us.”
Margotta lauded the performance of all of his players, especially Ruiz and Anthony Sole. Ruiz led the Tornadoes’ offense with 16 points, including a trio of 3-pointers, and Sole had 15 points.
“Anthony Sole had a great game tonight,” Margotta commented. “He shot the ball very well, especially from beyond the [3-point] arc. He has been spending a lot of extra time in the gym working on his outside shot. And when Christian Ruiz is making his shots, he really helps our offense.”
Even though the Tornadoes’ defense keyed on him throughout the contest, Taur-ino still managed to score a game-high 21 points. Huggins added 10 points for the Blue Devils.
“I am pleased with all of our kids,” Ahart said. “They are working hard and trying to improve.
“We have only played three games so far this season,” Ahart added. “These guys are getting better. They are getting better with each practice and each game.