Maturing Cougars finish strong to beat GV Christian
LAUGHLIN — After suffering a 59-45 road loss at Henderson to Green Valley Christian earlier this season, the Laughlin High School Cougars were looking to get even on Jan. 9.
Laughlin, coming off a 45-41 win against Indian Springs the night before, carried momentum into Wednesday night’s game. The Cougars finished strong with a 64-46 win against GV Christian after a third-quarter scare.
“This is still a young team and they just don’t know how to put things away yet,” head coach Gary Reese said. “I had to sit them down (in the third quarter) and chew on them a little bit, but they went back out and got it done.”
Both non-conference wins improve their overall record to 4-6. The boys are still 1-5 in NIAA 2A South League play according to MaxPreps.
The Cougars got off to a quick 20-9 lead against the Guardians in the first quarter.
Junior guard Diego Trujillo made eight of those points, six of which came from beyond the arc. He would end up with 16 points on the night.
Against Indian Springs, Trujillo had a 20-point outing.
“Diego is just a game-winner,” Reese said. “He is kind of one of those players that are going to give his left arm (to win), and it’s fun to coach him.”
Laughlin’s offense continued to roll in the second, and at the half lead 37-22.
However, GV Christian crawled its way back into the game, putting up 18 points to Laughlin’s nine during the third quarter.
It was the only quarter where the Guardians outscored the Cougars.
The cause was Laughlin’s seven fouls committed in the third, giving the Guardians extra opportunities at the line. Freshman David Thurman converted six points after going to the line twice for an “and one” play. He finished with 11 on the night.
The scoring continued for the Guardians when junior Collin Killoran, who had 16 on the night, made a three pointer to make it a 9-0 run late in the third. It cut Laughlin’s double-digit lead to six, making it a game.
“I want them to play aggressive,” Reese said, “However, we kind of got stupid there in the third, and needed to slow down and play good defense.”
It was 46-40 going into the fourth.
The Guardians opened up the fourth-quarter scoring, making it a four-point game.
However, on their next offensive possession, a steal, followed by a layup from senior guard Josh Furr, gave momentum back to the Cougars.
Furr ended the game with 11 points.
The Cougars finished the fourth strong, putting up 18 points to close out the game 64-46. They ended the game with 20 fouls and GV Christian had 17.
Up next the Cougars will be back on the road for a conference game against Calvary Chapel Christian who are 7-5 overall and 5-1 in league play.
Reese said he is excited to play Calvary and is anxious to see what his team can do against them.