There’s nothing quite like the afterglow of winning to take the edge off of chilly winter winds, and Hillsboro’s basketball teams felt the warmth Tuesday as they each scored wins over Nickerson.
If the boys thought they might have an easy go of it against Nickerson, 4-9, the Panthers gave the Trojans reason to think twice.
Nickerson was red-hot in the first quarter, canning 8 of 11 shots, while Hillsboro was lackluster, hitting for just 5 of 16. Three of those shots were 3-pointers, keeping the Trojans close, 19-15.
The Trojans warmed up in the second quarter, limiting the Panthers to 8 shots while scoring 17 points of their own to take a 32-31 halftime lead.
Hillsboro took control from there, outscoring Nickerson 35-25 in the second half for a 67-56 win.
Preston Loewen had a breakout game, scoring 19 points and hitting three 3-pointers. Darian Ratzlaff scored 16, and Austin Cross added 12.
In the girls’ game, the tables were turned, with Hillsboro getting off to a fast start. Stifling defense by the Trojans held the Panthers to just 2 baskets in the first quarter, including a 6-minute stretch in which Nickerson did not score. Hillsboro opened up a 13-4 lead at the end of the quarter.
Hillsboro was even more dominant in the third quarter, pouring in 21 points on 9-of-17 shooting, while holding Nickersen to just 7 points, as the Trojans coasted to a 55-38 win.
Tas Sanchez led the Trojans in scoring with 19 points, followed by Alex Ratzlaff with 10.