Tonawanda News — CITY OF TONAWANDA — It was the type of game that reminds you just how important a strong start truly is.
Tristan Boling scored 28 as Tonawanda fought off the challenge of a surprisingly scrappy Eden squad to come away with a 52-45 win ECIC IV action hat played at the George H. Miller Gym on Friday night.
Paced by a trio of 3-pointers from Ben Stich (11 points, seven assists) and 10 points from Boling, the Warriors held a commanding 21-7 lead at the end of the first quarter. But even though they had a substantial lead, as a group the Warriors (9-6, 6-3) confessed that they didn't feel as if they had complete control of the game as the score indicated.
Entering the game without a win in league play, the Raiders (2-10, 0-8) proved to be a far more dangerous team than their record would suggest. They played as if they had nothing to lose and battled to the very end.
Eden was also able to take advantage of the situation when 6-foot-5 Tonawanda senior Connor Pumm was hit with his third foul and was forced to come out of the game with 5:50 remaining in the second quarter.
Eden went on a 13-4 run during Pumm's absence as they outscored Tonawanda 19-4 in the quarter and took a 26-25 lead into halftime, thanks to AJ Feldman completing a three-point play.
The Warriors took a collective breath at halftime and knew they had to strike first and get the momentum back in their favor.
“We were just playing lazy, I would say,” Boling said. “Then we just woke up, basically. We knew we just had to wake up. Coach said that they're hungry to win and we've just got to come out and play harder.”
Pumm agreed that as a team they it was crucial for everyone to refocus and play to their strengths.