BANDON — One focus of new Coquille boys coach Willy Layton has been conditioning, and the Red Devils showed it during their season opener at Bandon on Wednesday.
Coquille broke open a relatively tight game with a huge run in the second half on the way to a 64-34 win over the host Tigers.
“It was a rough start,” Coquille’s Henry Scolari said of the first half. “We picked it up big time.
“The second half, we started kicking it up the floor and running.”
That came after Layton’s first halftime speech, which included that primary instruction, Scolari said.
“We knew they couldn’t keep up,” Scolari said. “We’ve been doing a lot of conditioning.”
The teams were tied 8-all through one quarter, but Bandon didn’t make a shot from the floor in the second quarter, getting just five free throws, and Scolari scored nine points in a row to help Coquille go up 24-13 at the break.
The Tigers came out firing in the third quarter, and trailed just 34-29 after a 3-pointer by Coby Smith with about 2 minutes to go in the third quarter.
But Coquille exploded from there, scoring 14 straight to bridge the third and fourth quarters and 14 more in a row after a 3-pointer by Bandon’s Matt Yarbor broke the string midway through the fourth quarter.
Scolari had 25 points and Seth Waddington 19 for the Red Devils and they each grabbed nine rebounds as well. Coquille also forced 27 turnovers, turning a number of them into transition points with the Red Devils running the floor to get transition buckets.
“I’m happy with the effort,” Layton said. “They got what I wanted.”
Coquille didn’t shoot as well as he’d like, making just one 3-pointer (by Waddington), and missing several shots inside, but the Red Devils had a 42-18 rebounding edge and got up 27 more shot attempts than the Tigers. The Red Devils turned their pressure defense into 15 steals.
Colton GeDeros had eight points and Hayden Davis six points and six rebounds in the win.
Bandon got 14 points from Smith and 11 from Yarbor in the loss.
The Tigers are adjusting to the offense of new coach Matt Angove, who led Bandon to a number of successful seasons during his first stint leading the Tigers.
“We’re going to get a lot better,” Smith said. “We’ve only had 2 ½ weeks to get used to the new coach and the new system.”
Bandon’s best offensive stretch came in the start of the third quarter, when the Tigers made four 3-pointers.
“We started to run the offense really well,” Smith said.
But it didn’t last against Coquille’s pressure and athleticism. For the game, Bandon made seven 3-pointers, but only three shots from inside the arc.
“There were some positive things,” Angove said. “For two quarters, we couldn’t hit anything.
“In the third quarter, we got some good looks. But then we gave them too many easy baskets.”
But Angove wasn’t concerned about the opener so much as the big picture.
“They’re having to learn a new offense and a new defense,” he said. “And we’re not in very good shape yet.
“I think once we get in shape and have a little more time, we’ll be fine. Our focus is Jan. 12 when we open with Reedsport. We have a lot to get down.”
Layton, too, was looking ahead for his Coquille squad.
“We’ve got a long way to go,” he said. “I’m proud of the kids.”
Bandon visits Riddle on Friday while Coquille is at North Bend on Saturday.