COLUMBUS — Twin River buried five 3-pointers and scored 20 points in the opening quarter of Thursday's Columbus Holiday Tournament game against Scotus Central Catholic.
When Mason Prososki opened the second quarter with a four-point play — the Titans' sixth trey followed by a free throw — Twin River was up 24-17 on the host Shamrocks.
Then Scotus locked down on defense, holding Twin River scoreless for the remainder of the second quarter and allowing just 13 points the rest of the way in a 56-37 victory at Dowd Activity Center.
"I thought we came out a little bit sluggish and had to play through some moratorium fatigue the first quarter or so," Scotus head coach Tyler Swanson said, referencing the Nebraska School Activities Association-imposed five-day holiday break from practices and games.
"Offensively, it looked good on the scoreboard, but it was a sloppy game the first quarter," Swanson added.
Twin River's Brandon Miller scored all nine of his points in the opening quarter on three treys and Jaxson Hinkle added two 3s, part of his eight-point effort for the game, as the Titans went up 20-17 after eight minutes.
The Shamrocks kept pace as Caden Pelan scored 10 of his 19 points in the quarter.
Pelan added the second of his three 3-pointers in the second period and Telegram Super Senior Trevor Kaslon chipped in six of his 19 points as Scotus took control following Prososki's early four-point play.
"We settled in defensively the second and third quarters and only gave up four points in each quarter," said Swanson, whose team led 29-24 at halftime. "We were creating turnovers and holding them to one shot, but we weren't valuing the basketball ourselves so we didn't get more of a lead until the fourth quarter."
Scotus held a 9-4 edge in the third quarter before pulling away in the fourth, when the Shamrocks outscored Twin River 18-9.
Grant Shanle scored eight of his nine points in the final period for Scotus, which went 10 of 16 at the free-throw line and knocked down four 3-pointers in the game.
"I think we played one of our better quarters of the year in the fourth quarter," Swanson said. "We were able to put them away by executing in the half court both offensively and defensively.
"We've been talking the last month about how important it is to close out our opponents when we have a lead. It was nice to see us do that tonight."
Twin River hit seven 3-pointers in the game, but only one came after the opening moments of the second quarter. That was a fourth-quarter trey from Prososki, who finished with seven points.
Scotus (2-6) faces rival Lakeview in Friday's holiday tournament title game. The Shamrocks are looking for their fifth straight championship in the event.
Twin River (2-6) plays Schuyler in Friday's consolation game.