By KEVIN THOMPSON
SATANTA — Out of the gates, the Satanta Indians boys played as though they were still on a holiday break.
But after a slow first quarter, they picked up the pace and held on for a 58-52 win over visiting Syracuse in Hi-Plains League action Friday night.
Down 12-8 after the first quarter, Satanta held the Bulldogs to just a 3-point play as they took a 21-15 lead at the break.
Both teams shot 8-for-10 from the floor in the third as Syracuse mounted a comeback. But after their opponents pulled to within 40-39 early in the fourth, the Indians went on an 8-0 run and held off a the battling Bulldogs.
Satanta got scoring from seven players, led by Garrett Miller's 16, while Bennett Miller and Tristan Colantonio each added 11.
Bennett Miller scored the first seven points for the Indians to start the second half to keep the Bulldog surge in check before Garrett Miller got on track, scoring 12 of his points that half.
For Syracuse coach Jeff Mathias, his team gave a good effort but it was easy to see the effects of the break.
"We looked a little rusty, particularly in that second quarter," he said. "I thought offensively we looked good at times, but defensively we struggled."
Credit Satanta for doing good things, he added, especially when they applied full-court pressure.
"That sped us up offensively and we weren't able to slow it down," Mathias said.
Satanta coach Tim Dusin was pleased with his team's effort, especially after a first quarter that saw them go just 3 for 10 from the floor.
"Defensively we played really well," he said. "Offensively, we controlled the ball and made smart choices."
Satanta refused to relinquish the lead in the second half, and that was the key to the game, both coaches said.
"The last few games teams have been able to make a run on us and we've been able to come back," Dusin said. "We're getting to the point where we can hold our own when teams come at us."
His Indians fought hard, especially after the break, he said, and it was a decent game to watch.
"I kept telling them they'd have to get the stop at some point and we just never got that stop," Mathias said. "Offensively for us, the well kind of ran dry and we put ourselves down 10 and it's hard to come back."
Dexter English led Syracuse with 21 points and Tierney DeWitt added 17.
Satanta outrebounded the Bulldogs (3-4) 22-17.
The Indians are now 4-3, matching their win total from all last year.
"There's still a lot of season to go," Dusin said. "Hopefully we get to the point where we continue to battle and play well. We're competing, and the kids are playing well."
Syracuse girls 36, Satanta 20
The Lady Indians found the field goals hard to come by and the rebounding even tougher as they fell to Syracuse, 36-20.
Satanta converted just 7 of its 37 field goals (19 percent) and did not have the height to get the offensive boards.
Syracuse, meanwhile, suffered from turnover-itis (28) but had the height to score from inside over the much-shorter Lady Indians, converting 16 of its 42 attempts (38 percent).
Syracuse out-rebounded Satanta 35-19.
Syracuse broke away in the second period, holding the Indians to just a pair of field goals midway in.
The Lady Bulldogs pulled away after the break with an 11-4 quarter, holding Satanta to a goal and two free throws by Emma Stalker.
They also took advantage of Vanessa Caro's foul trouble in the second half.
Reagan Wilson led Syracuse with 10 points and pulled down 8 boards. Delaney Pollart added nine points and grabbed a game-high 13 rebounds. Caro led the Indians with eight points before fouling out.
Syracuse coach Bryce Simon watched his girls improve to 4-3 despite the turnovers, which he said has been something they've dealt with all season by offsetting that with rebounding.
"That's our one advantage against a lot of teams," he said. "We're not necessarily faster or quicker or phenomenal shooters. But we can walk out on the floor and be bigger and find some sort of mismatch."
Turnovers are an issue, as they have been averaging about 30 a game, Simon said.
"You look at some of our stats and you don't know how we do it," he said. "We have nobody averaging over eight points a game, but we find a way."
Friday that way was the defense, as Simon said the Bulldogs found a way to shut down the Caro twins, holding them to a combined 10 points.
"They're two phenomenal players and our girls took the scouting report and executed it exactly how we wanted them to, and that was the difference," he said.
Satanta coach Janie Lutz said her team was fighting some injuries on a team that's not very deep and now find themselves at 3-4.
"We're quick, but we couldn't make them play our game," she said.
Given all the turnover chances, though, her girls didn't take advantage, something they'll be working on.
"We're also working on the three H's — heart, hustle, and hard work — trying to get that ingrained in us," Lutz said.
It's coming, she said, but they're still young.
Simon said his girls are a decent team; they just need to eliminate the high number of turnovers.
Both box scores in Scoreboard, Page B2.