FORT COLLINS — It happens on every level and in every sport.

You line up and play a team that is struggling on one night and have to come back the next time out against one of the best.

How you control your emotions in a game you know, and everybody else in the gym knows, you are going to win is the key to success.

Boulder coach Jack Clarke had his guys dialed in on Friday night against one-win Poudre, crushing the Impalas 81-44, before Saturday's showdown in Aurora with No. 1 Rangeview.

"We wanted to get some different things on film tonight and run through some different sets and tonight was about execution and I thought we did a good job of that," said Clarke, whose Panthers improved to 9-3 overall and stayed a flawless 3-0 in the Front Range League.

"You can never simulate a game environment, so even in a game like that, it's good to get better every possession."

The Panthers did what they needed to do early against a team that is struggling to find any traction. Boulder opened the game on a 19-1 run behind their starting five, led by Landon Taliaferro.

The senior sharp-shooter scored nine of his game-high 21 in the first five minutes and allowed Clarke to experiment with his deep bench.

""It's kind of the starters' duty to make sure those guys at the end of the bench get a lot of run," he said. "Plus with that game against Rangeview tomorrow, we wanted to give our guys as much rest as we could."

Said Taliaferro: "We love to see those guys succeed too. They work hard in practice everyday just like us."


Boulder moved off the ball well all night and created open looks from the perimeter as well as under the basket. Ten of the 12 players that logged minutes scored and Clarke got 29 points off the bench. Savoy Carl led all reserves with nine points, Davis Kang had eight and Ben Posthumus scored six.

After Taliferro's 21, Boulder got 13 from Jack Boyle and 12 from Luke Wilson.

"This was a more important game in a lot ways than the Rangeview game, because it was a league game and so much of what the state seeding come down to is what you do inside the conference," Clarke said. "By no means did we want to overlook them, but (Saturday)is a measuring stick and to be the best you have to play the best and beat the best.

"We've got to come out an compete for 32 minutes and it's going to be a good test for our guys."

Poudre (1-12, 0-3) got 13 points from Mitch Yokem and 10 from Owen Silcox in the losing effort.

Jon Yunt: or

Boulder 81, Poudre 44

At Poudre

BOULDER (9-3, 3-0)

Peter McNeal 2 0-0 4, Luke Wilson 3 4-5 12, Landon Taliaferro 9 0-0 21, Davis Kang 3 0-0 8, Savoy Carl 4 0-0 9, Sam Kirk 0 0-0 0, Peter Chopra 2 0-0 4, Bill DiScipio 1 0-0 2, Jake Baker 0 0-0 0, Jack Boyle 4 3-3 13, Ben Posthumus 3 0-0 6, Ben Davis 1 0-0 2. Totals 32 7-9 81.

POUDRE (1-12, 0-3)

Alan Estrada 0 0-0 0, Mitch Yokem 5 0-0 13, Carlos Conde 0 0-0 0, Connor Smoyer 0 0-0 0, Kyle West 1 1-2 3, Troy McFadden 1 1-2 4, Anthony Raffaeli 4 1-3 9, Owen Silcox 4 2-6 10, Alan Diaz 0 0-0 0, Jack Fisher 2 0-0 5. Totals 17 5-13 44.

Score by quarters:

Boulder 23 20 20 18 — 81

Poudre 7 12 10 15 — 44

3-point field goals — Boulder (10): Taliaferro 3, Wilson 2, Kang 2, Boyle 2, Carl; Poudre (5): Yokem 3, McFadden, Fisher. Total fouls — Boulder 18; Poudre 13.