BROOMFIELD — In years past, the Holy Family Tigers could lean on scorers in times of need to put a team on their back and carry them.
But gone are the likes of Tanner Baird and Kyle Helbig, and the 2019-20 pack of Tigers is still trying to find their offensive identity. Sure Garrett Green is great — and was again on Thursday night — but he can’t do it all himself.
That’s why in their 57-37 victory over Roosevelt on the freshly painted floor at Holy Family, when the box score showed nine different players scoring the basketball — including crowd favorite, senior Leo Nelson with the first two points of his high school career — was so refreshing.
“It is a completely different feel from last year when we had some seniors that led us and could score the ball quite easily,” said Green, who finished with a game-high 20 points against the RoughRiders. “We’ve got to find ways to score and I know sometimes Dom (Nellis) and I try to take over too much, and we just need to trust our teammates.
“And we did a good job of that in the second half.”
One night after getting blown out at Erie, the Tigers — playing their third game in three nights — started slowly against a Roosevelt side that was eager to come in an prove a point. The RoughRiders were up 11-3 early, with all five starters scoring in the opening minutes, and held an 18-12 lead after eight minutes.
But that lead quickly disappeared. Holy Family’s defense began to smother and create turnovers that were leading to points on the other end.
The Tigers (5-4 overall, 2-2 in the Tri-Valley League) outscored Roosevelt 12-2 in the second quarter and went to the locker rooms with a still tenuous 24-20 lead.
Holy Family found their legs and their range in the third quarter and created separation with the long ball. Both Green and senior Jacob VanHandel each knocked down two three pointers in the quarter and the lead grew to 44-28 with eight minutes to play.
“In the huddle (before the game), I basically said last night wasn’t us. We let up 71 on defense and tonight I said we’ve got to get back to it,” Green said. “I think we did.”
The big lead allowed the Tigers to rest their starters in the fourth after a long week of games, and allowed some new faces to get in the game. With the crowd erupting every time he touched the ball, Nelson — with his brothers in the stands — scored the first two points of his prep career late in the game. So to did freshman Eric Quintana, whose and-on lay-up sent the Tigers faithful and bench into a frenzy.
“It’s definitely a great feeling coming off the bench as a reserve and having the whole student section and the bench cheering for you,” Nellis said. “It’s a great memory that they will remember for the rest of their lives.”
On the girls side, coach Ron Rossi’s squad completed a 3-0 week with a decisive 57-33.
Both teams are off until next Tuesday when they host a non-conference game against Evergreen.
HOLY FAMILY 57, ROOSEVELT 37
At Holy Family
Roosevelt (3-5, 0-2) 18 2 8 9 — 37
Holy Family (5-4, 2-2) 12 12 20 13 — 57
Roosevelt — Kaiser 1 1-2 4, Peterson 2 1-1 5, Grimes 3 0-0 7, Moore 1 1-2 3, Patrick 2 5-7 9, Schmitz 1 0-0 3, O’Brien 0 2-2 2, Herrera 0 1-2 1, Beard 1 0-0 3. Totals 11 11-16 37.
Holy Family — Dom Nellis 3 0-0 6, Blake Hammond 3 0-2 7, Jackson Ward 2 1-2 5, Garrett Green 8 2-2 20, Jacob VanHandel 2 0-0 6, Andrew Campbell 2 2-2 6, Connor Cooney 1 0-2 2, Cole Greany 0 0-0 0, Leo Nelson 1 0-0 2, Eric Quintana 1 1-1 3, Rocco Bridges 0 0-0 0, Brandon Pierret 0 0-0 0. Totals 23 6-11 57.
3-pt. goals — Roosevelt (4): Kaiser, Grimes, Schmitz, Beard; Holy Family (5): Green 2, VanHandel 2, Hammond.