BOULDER -- It takes some time for Broomfield girls basketball to heat up, Nicole Lehrer admits. But in the same breath, the sophomore points out, the Eagles are a lot to handle.

The guard was more than proven right Tuesday night in the opening round of the Fairview Festival. It took about one period for the freshly minted top-ranked Class 4A team to find its groove against Prairie View.

The Eagles put up 44 points in the final two periods to rout the Thunderhawks 78-36.

"I don't know what it is about the first half, maybe it's the jitters or something," Lehrer said. "But once we got into the groove in the second half, everything just fits in."

Broomfield (4-0) might have had a heyday to open the tournament, but the Eagles are more than cognizant the rest of the brackets will be more testing than Prairie View (3-3). The next up for the team is Palmer 6:30 p.m., a team Mike Croell points out has been a giant slayer knocking two No. 1 teams off their perch.

"(Fourth-ranked) Palmer beat Pueblo South, then Highlands Ranch," said the Broomfield coach, whose team is chasing its seventh Fairview Festival title in the past eight years. "It get a lot tougher from here on out that's for sure."

Even with the potential to get tested the Eagles have plenty to gain from a strong run through the tournament. Broomfield might be No. 1 three weeks into the season, but Lehrer believes the team needs to prove it is the top.

"We have an opportunity to prove ourselves," she said. "We've got a bit of a chip on our shoulders."

Lehrer played like she has something prove Tuesday night, finishing with a career-high offensive showing. The sophomore hit 9 of 10 shots from the floor on the way to recording 19 points. The pace of the game and defensive pressure played into her strengths, she gave her teammate their due for setting her up.

"Bri (Wilber) and Brenna (Chase), like always, were getting a lot of pressure on the ball," she said. "Props to them for deflecting balls and getting me the opportunity."

Lehrer was one of two Eagles to break into double digits, with Chase coming off the the bench to score 14. But Broomfield's offense paled to what its defense brought to the floor. The Eagles only allowed one Thunderhawk out of single digits and held the team to 16 points in the second half.

"We're not the Broomfield teams of yore that could just overpower you with 6-foot play, bang it inside players" Croell said. "Our defense has got to be our offense and the first four games that's been the case."

Follow Elwood on Twitter: @ElwoodKShelton.

 

BROOMFIELD 78, PRAIRIE VIEW 36

At Fairview HS

BROOMFIELD (4-0)

Kaiser 5 6-6 16, Wilber 1 1-2 3, Croell 1 2-2 4, Stoval 2 1-2 5, Lehrer 9 1-1 19, Chase 6 0-0 14, Rohrbough 2 0-0 5, Fankell 1 1-2 3, Albrecht 3 1-2 7, Hull 1 0-0 2. Totals 32 13-17 78.

PRAIRIE VIEW (3-3)

Wilson 5 0-0 10, Lind 1 2-4 4, Quinonez 1 2-2, Lingd 3 3-4 9, Mendoza 3 0-2 9. Totals 13 7-12 36.

Score by quarters:

Broomfield 15 19 24 20 -- 78

Prairie View 10 10 8 8 -- 36

3-point field goals -- Broomfield (2): Chase, Rohrbough; Prairie View (3): Mendoza. Total fouls -- Broomfield 11, Prairie View 12. Fouled out -- none. Technical fouls -- none.