No. 10 Bulldogs open district with rival win

League favorites still working out bugs in game

Thorndale’s Sam Stockton wheels around Thralls’ Blake Crabb for a basket in the Bulldogs’ district opener. 
Reporter/Teresa Ging Thorndale’s Sam Stockton wheels around Thralls’ Blake Crabb for a basket in the Bulldogs’ district opener. Reporter/Teresa Ging The No. 10 Thorndale Bulldogs opened their District 26A slate with a 44-39 victory over Thrall FridaynightatBulldogGymnasium and followed that up with a 69-61 overtime win at Holland.

Riley Schaefer led the Bulldogs (10-4) in the low scoring affair against Thrall with 10 points as Thorndale shot just 25 percent from the floor (missing 31 shots) and 54 percent from the free throw line. (14-for-26).

Sam Stockton and Jordan Hafley followed with nine points each.

Aaron Laurence turned in a solid game with eight rebounds, four assists and three steals.

The Bulldogs (12-4, 2-0) picked off 18 steals as a team against Thrall (8-12, 0-1), which has lost eight straight.

As district play settles in, Thorndale is the favorite ahead of Holland and Granger, but got a late start because of a deep football run.

“I think we are having some issues right now that we usually have ironed out by district play,” said Thorndale Coach Doug Franklin. “But, the reality is football playing deep in the playoffs can’t be an excuse for us.”

The Bulldogs charged to a 29-19 halftime lead, but were outscored 22-15 in the second half ands had to hold on for the victory.

The Bulldogs held 6-foot- 9 Austen Stolte to 12 points. He entered the contest averaging 17 points and 17 rebounds a game.

“District is here and we need to play well,” Franklin said. “We were lucky to beat Thrall. We played one good quarter and then got outplayed for three quarters. We had a lot of mental errors offensively and defensively.

“That being said, winning the district opener against a rival was all that really mattered. Going forward we need to play better.”

Against Holland, despite scoring just 22 points in the first half, the Bulldogs were able to hang around and force the overtime period where they posted 16 points.

“Needless to say we played better in the second half,” Franklin said.

At one point the Bulldogs were down 13 in the second quarter.

Stockton led the way w ith 23 points on 8-of-14 shooting, followed by Mays and Schaefer with 13 each.

Scoring— Hafley 13.0, Stockton
11.4, Laurence 8.1, Schaefer 7.4,
Hinistroza 6.1.
Rebounds—Llana 5.1, Hinistroza 3.9
Assists—Stockton 3.3, Schaefer 2.4
3PTS—Hafley 12, Schaefer 5
Steals—Stockton 24, Llana 20

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