Realistically, it would have been difficult to draw up a better start for the season opener than the Boulder boys basketball team put together Saturday night.

In the first quarter of their first game, the Panthers scored 28 points, hit six 3-pointers and forced 10 turnovers.

And the 14-point lead they built after one period set them up for a rather easy 74-48 victory over Prairie View on BHS' home court.

The 26-point margin of victory was the biggest Boulder has had under second-year coach Eric Eisenhard.

"It was good to get out of the blocks quick," said junior Kevin VanLieshout, who along with Garrett Turner led Boulder offensively with 14 points apiece. "We were ready to get this one under our belts."

The Panthers put five players in double figures against a Prairie View team that has gone 49-22 over the last three-plus seasons, including 1-1 this year. Besides VanLieshout and Turner, Alejandro Rodriguez scored 13 points, Jonah Charnick 12 and Diego Riverol 10.

Rodriguez set the tone in the first quarter with a couple of steals, a blocked shot and 10 points, including two treys.

For the Panthers to start like that "feels really good because we played really good defense, and that let us score a lot," Rodriguez said. "We played like a team."

After trailing 5-3, Boulder outscored Prairie View 38-12 to take a 41-17 lead in the middle of the second quarter.


"We shot the ball really well in the first quarter and we played the pressure defense we're capable of playing," Eisenhard said. "When we do those two things, good things are going to happen."

And though the Panthers played many of their reserves considerable minutes in the second half, they never allowed the Thunderhawks to build any momentum. Prairie View finished with 21 turnovers, while BHS ended up shooting 55 percent from the field and hitting nine 3-pointers.

All in all, it was a good building block for a Boulder team that went 8-15 last season.

"I think their expectations have risen," Eisenhard said of his players. "We worked tremendously hard over the off-season. We played over 50 games and had over 125 workouts. Guys really came together as a family in the off-season. The improvement is pretty tremendous, and I think you started to see some of that tonight."

Boulder will play its first road game on Tuesday at Westminster.

Boulder 74, Prairie View 48

At Boulder HS

PRAIRIE VIEW (1-1) -- Santa Rosa 1 0-0 3, Wahab 4 2-5 11, Montoya 2 0-0 5, Schwindaman 3 0-0 8, Alexis 4 0-1 8, Severance 1 0-0 2, Balderama 1 0-0 2, Jones 1 2-4 4, Jackson 2 1-1 5. Totals 19 5-11 48.

BOULDER (1-0) -- Turner 5 1-1 14, Charnick 6 0-0 12, Lampert 1 3-6 5, Rodriguez 5 1-1 13, Bohm 2 0-0 4, Szarmach 1 0-0 2, Riverol 4 0-0 10, VanLieshout 6 0-1 14, Blessing 0 0-0 0. Totals 30 5-9 74.

Score by quarters:

Prairie View 14 10 13 11 -- 48

Boulder 28 17 16 13 -- 74

3-point field goals -- Prairie View (5): Schwindaman 2, Santa Rosa, Wahab, Montoya; Boulder (9): Turner 3, VanLieshout 2, Rodriguez 2, Riverol 2. Total fouls -- Prairie View 11, Boulder 16. Fouled out -- Blessing. Technical fouls -- none.