THORNTON – The Thornton Trojans have become a force to reckon with at home.
The Trojans held off a late rally by Westminster Tuesday night to get a 49-34 victory over their league rivals and improved to 7-0 at home.
“Kids play with extra energy at home,” said Thornton’s coach Sercan Fenerci. “They have some fans here and it helps out a lot.”
More importantly for Thornton (10-6 overall), the Trojans improved to 2-0 in the East Metro League – they beat Prairie View 42-41 in their league opener on Jan. 18.
“Getting the league wins are huge and we are taking care of what we need to do,” Fenerci said.
The Trojans did much of their damage thanks to their defense, which held Westminster to only six points in the first half and went on a 15-point run in the second quarter.
Thornton, which held an 8-4 advantage after the first quarter, opened the game up in the second. A basket by Daezionate Hernandez and a trey by Donovan Gomez pushed the Trojans advantage to double-figures.
The Trojans pushed their advantage to 23-4, before a basket by Jon Rossini scored a basket with two minutes left in the half.
“We played great defense in the first too, but we just didn’t hit shots,” Fenerci said. “Defense is where it all starts. As long as we get a stop and rebound the ball we will be in good position to win games.”
Westminster did battle back in the fourth quarter; Anthony Sarno scored 11 points for the Wolves in the fourth quarter to cut the Trojans lead to 40-29. However, a basket by R.J. Brewer sealed the victory for Thornton.
Gomez had a game-high 17 points, while Samuel Shumate added 11.
The Trojans will look to keep stay perfect in league on Friday when they travel to Rangeview.
Westminster (1-15, 0-3 EML) will try to get back on track on Friday at Prairie View.