LONGMONT -- Two years ago, the Skyline boys basketball team probably would have wilted and lost when confronted by a rally like the one Mountain View mounted early in the second half Friday night.
But that was then, this is now, and the Falcons withstood the Mountain Lions' onslaught and emerged with a 70-63 victory in SHS' home opener.
After leading by 13 at halftime, Skyline was outscored 18-5 to start the third quarter, which tied the game. But Mountain View, despite getting 14 third-quarter points from Matt Jason, never did take the lead after intermission. And by fending off the threat, the Falcons improved to 2-0 on the season.
"I'm going into my third year with this team, and it's a different level of confidence with these kids," coach Michael Peterson said. "I really wasn't concerned. I was hoping we'd make a run and we did."
Peterson may not have been so confident two season ago, when Skyline went 2-21. But coming off a playoff berth last year, the outlook has changed.
"I think our program has turned the corner where they understand work ethic and what it takes to be good," Peterson said. "These kids get it. They've sacrificed going on three years, and they trust each other."
After the game was knotted again at 45 on Friday, Skyline held Mountain View (0-2) scoreless for a couple of minutes and took the lead for good as the Mountain Lions turned the ball over four times and missed three straight shots.
Mountain View got as close as 64-61 in the fourth quarter, but Skyline didn't fold.
It didn't hurt that the Falcons' senior 1-2 punch in the middle was so effective Friday. Six-foot-6 Colton Dabney finished with 21 points, while 6-5 Zach Anthony added 18.
"This season, me and 'Z' are going to do real well, I think," Dabney said. "We're both 6-5, 6-6, and we both have good post moves. They might have one good guy inside but they're not going to have two. As long as we keep moving the ball, we'll be effective."
Added Peterson: "We're as good inside as anyone in 4A basketball. We are going to win and lose based on our post play. If those two guys are strong like they were tonight, we're tough to beat. If they're not, we're average. We're blessed to have 6-6, 6-5; it doesn't happen every year, so we'll take it."
Skyline prevailed Friday despite missing one of its top players, senior Dustin Mandrel, who sat out for personal reasons. Also not helping matters was 11-for-24 free-throw shooting.
"It was a tough win but we got it," Anthony said. "I was confident in the team."
Skyline will return to action Wednesday when it hosts Summit at 8 p.m. in Skyline's Falcon Challenge tournament.
SKYLINE 70, MOUNTAIN VIEW 63
At Skyline HS
MOUNTAIN VIEW (0-2)
Kunisch 5 0-0 12, Kress 2 0-0 4, Jason 5 1-2 14, Sundin 3 6-10 14, Porterfield 3 0-0 6, Fisher 0-0 0, Patton 6 1-2 13. Totals 24 8-14 63.
Soriano 3 0-0 6, Dabney 9 3-8 21, Stuvel 1 0-2 3, Quesada 4 3-5 13, Anthony 8 2-6 18, Forsyth 2 1-1 5, Steakley 1 0-0 2, Mansanares 0 2-2 2. Totals 28 11-24 70.
Score by quarters:
Mountain View 11 14 22 16 -- 63
Skyline 17 21 16 16 -- 70
3-point field goals -- Mountain View (7): Jason 3, Kunisch 2, Sundin 2; Skyline (3): Quesada 2, Stuvel. Total fouls -- Mountain View 21, Skyline 16. Fouled out -- Patton; Soriano. Technical fouls -- none.