Even though it is just two games into a .500 start to the 2016-17 season, the Erie boys basketball team has already learned enough about itself to expect a much-improved season.

The Tigers finished last season with a dismal 2-21 record. They also won just one conference game and finished last in the Tri-Valley League. After winning their season opener against Niwot last week, the Tigers fell 61-50 to Evergreen in the first round of the Paul Davis Classic tournament on Thursday night.

Maybe it's just a two-game sample, but second-year head coach Scott Melin already believes this year's team has the potential to get the program, which had back-to-back winning seasons in 2013-14 and 2014-15, back on track.

"I think our first game was more indicative of what to expect this season," Melin said. "Our guys have spent a lot of time in the weight room and honing their craft during the club season. I think a lot of people who are expecting us to just be like we were last year are going to be surprised."

The Tigers (1-1) shouldn't be too disappointed with Thursday's loss to Evergreen (2-1), a team that entered the season ranked 10th in Class 4A by the CHSAANow.com preseason poll and hit used several timely runs and five 3-pointers to beat the Tigers. While they trailed by over 20 points in the third-quarter, the Tigers did make an encouraging 15-0 run to end the game and nearly cut the lead to single digits.


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"We never led other than in the first quarter," Melin said. "Evergreen is a pretty solid team but we came out tonight with pretty good energy at the beginning of the game. We needed a little bit more later on in the game, though. We just faced some talented players who were hitting their shots."

The Tigers are still missing 6-foot-9 center Cameron McCurry, who led the team with 14.2 points per game last season and is currently injured. With their big man out of the lineup against Evergreen, Ethyn Tyson and Jadon Lucero, who hit four 3-pointers, tied for the team lead with 14 points apiece. Luke Loy and Jeffrey Farineau each chipped in six points.

Six-foot-6 senior Michael Dillon led Evergreen with 21 points.

The Tigers will play Battle Mountain at 3:30 p.m. on Friday.

Brad Cochi: cochib@dailycamera.com or twitter.com/BradCochi

 

Evergreen 60, Erie 51

At Green Mountain H.S.

ERIE (1-1)

Larson 0 0-0 0, Tyson 4 3-3 14, Black 1 0-0 2, Loy 2 2-2 6, Farineau 3 0-0 6, Lucero 4 2-2 14, Roper 0 0-0 0, Mathis 1 0-0 3, Mayers 0 0-0 0, Campbell 2 1-2 5, McCurry 0 0-0 0. Totals 19 8-10 50.

EVERGREEN (2-1)

Rogers 4 0-0 10, Tenney 6 2-2 14, Brown 0 0-0 0, Sayler 4 2-3 10, Berninzoni 2 0-1 2, Aafedt 0 0-0 0, Klein 1 0-0 2, Bokelman 1 0-0 2, Green 0 0-0 0, Dillon 8 2-2 21, Miller 0 0-0 0. Totals .

Score by quarters:

Erie 12 11 10 17 — 50
Evergreen 16 22 18 5 — 61

3-point field goals — Erie (6): Lucero 4, Tyson, Mathis; Evergreen (5): Dillon 3, Rogers 2. Total fouls — Erie 17, Evergreen 12.