Coyotes unable to overcome Farwell’s spurts

By Dave Wagner

FARWELL, Texas — Dora’s boys recovered from Farwell’s first haymaker, but not the second.
Down 11-0 in the first three minutes, the Coyotes battled back to within a point in the third quarter before the Steers ran off a 20-1 blitz that cemented a 65-49 victory on Friday night.
Senior guard Tate Nichols scored a season-best 27 points for Farwell (10-4).
The Steers’ fullcourt pressure helped turn the game back in their favor, with seniors Rowdy Mitchell and Robbie Tabb converting layups off backcourt turnovers in a span of 10 seconds late in the third quarter for a seven-point lead.
“I think that’s what set them back, and it snowballed from there,” Nichols said. “We let them back in the game in the second quarter; they broke our press a couple of times. But I think it got to them when we made our run.”
Coyotes coach Ty Thatcher said his team is trying to learn the intricacies of a matchup zone defense, and had problems at times.
“We didn’t make the quick adjustments we needed to,” he said. “Early in the game we seemed to be confused of our responsibilities, and we gave them some easy baskets.
“But I was proud that we came back and made it a game.”
The Steers put together an 18-for-22 showing from the free throw line, including 8-of-8 by Nichols and 5-of-6 by Mitchell, who finished with 11 points. Dora went just 4-of-6.
“That’s probably the best we’ve shot free throws all year,” first-year Farwell coach Clint Conkin said.
Dora (4-7) missed a number of relatively easy scoring chances in the third quarter when the game was still in the balance, and it turned out to be costly when the Steers got rolling again.
“It wasn’t anything we did on defense — they just missed them,” Conkin said. “Dora stepped up and played pretty well after the first half of the first quarter. They handled our press and started getting layups off it.”
Junior J.R. Gonzales led the Coyotes with 12 points, while junior Tyler Wilhoit added 11, but Dora couldn’t overcome 33 turnovers, including 11 in the first quarter.
“We missed six or eight little point-blankers throughout the game that would’ve made a difference,” Thatcher said. “The free throws they made and the layups we missed were the difference.”
Nichols said the Steers didn’t have their best game, either.
“We didn’t play very well tonight,” he said. “We looked sluggish out there. I guess the holidays are coming and we’re looking forward to the break.”

Farwell 65, Dora 49
Dora (4-7) —
Travis Belcher 3 1-1 7, Payton Terry 1 0-0 2, Tyler Wilhoit 5 1-2 11, Johnny Lopez 0 0-0 0, Efrain Lopez 1 0-0 2, J.R. Gonzales 6 0-0 12, Clay Smith 0 1-2 1, Casey O’Connor 1 0-0 3, Brent Hays 2 0-0 6, Austin Prewett 2 1-1 5. Totals 21 4-6 49.
Farwell (10-4) — Brett Howard 0 2-3 2, Robbie Tabb 2 0-0 5, Derrick Chandler 0 1-2 1, Tate Nichols 9 8-8 27, Rowdy Mitchell 3 5-6 11, Ty Gast 0 0-0 0, Chris Culver 2 2-2 8, Carlos Saenz 1 0-0 3, Colton Sudderth 3 0-1 6, Matthew Edwards 1 0-0 2. Totals 21 18-22 65.
Dora 10 17 10 12 — 49
Farwell 22 11 14 18 — 65
3-pointers —
Dora (3): Hays 2, O’Connor. Farwell (5): Culver 2, Nichols, Saenz, Tabb. Total fouls — Dora 22, Farwell 11. Fouled out — Wilhoit, E. Lopez, Sudderth. JV score — Farwell 50, Dora 30.