Free throws dog Longhorn boys |

Free throws dog Longhorn boys

Basalt's Cy Eaton lays up for two in the first period against the Rifle Bears Thursday evening December 4, 2003. Aspen Times photo/ Paul Conrad.

Experience and discipline worked against the Basalt boys basketball team in their season-opening loss to Rifle Thursday night.

“We missed free throws, we played undisciplined, all those things you see in a first game,” said Longhorn head coach Michael Green, following the 63-51 loss. “It was just one of those kind of loose and undisciplined games.”

Not helping matters was Rifle’s consistency from the line, as they hit 16 of 19 free throws in the first half.

“The game was always tight, the difference was free throws at the end,” Green said.

The Longhorns dug a hole early, as starters Cody Burkholder and Dillon Johnson found themselves in danger of fouling out in the first half. And Rifle’s defensive play was relentless, Green said.

“They just kept coming at us, our inexperience showed,” he said. “We just have to a be a little more patient, more disciplined in our shot selection.”

But Green said it was a good start to the season, especially considering Basalt only returns one true starter.

“We have a mixed bunch of different kids,” Green said. “It was a good effort, everybody played hard and we tended to play together.

“Rebounding-wise, we did a much better job than we have in the past,” he added. “And Ben [Pollock] did a good job playing point and controlling the tempo.”

Furthermore, Green said Hugo Araujo, a senior, did an excellent job coming off the bench.

Basalt travels to Moffat County Saturday for a 4 p.m. game, and will host Roaring Fork Dec. 16.

“We’ll build from this one. It’s not like Rifle was a slouch team,” Green said. “We played really hard. It was a good test for us ” we’ll be fine.”

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