Steers dominate the Eagles in season opener

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The Magdalena boys basketball team opened up its 2012-13 season at the Steer Stampede on Friday afternoon, and it made short work of the Evangel Christian Eagles in the first round of the tournament, beating them 70-30.

The Steers’ (1-0) young backcourt came through big for the home team as sophomore Ty Julian scored 23 points and his sophomore counterpart Dre Montoya added 18 of his own in a contest that was all but decided by the end of the first quarter.

Mag jumped out to a 22-9 lead, fueled mostly by superb shooting from beyond the arc, then rolled to the 40-point victory over the 2-2 Eagles.

Even though it was the Steers’ first win of the season, it was a resonate one for a team that lost 10 varsity players from last season.

“I think it’s big,” Magdalena head coach Jory Mirabal said of his young backcourt’s performance.

“Those boys have been playing with me since the eighth grade. Even though they’re sophomores, I think it’s obvious they’ve played a lot of basketball.”

Mirabal’s confidence in his sophomore guards was proven early as Julian and Montoya combined for seven first-half 3-pointers. Freshman Michael Chambers added one more as the Steers took a commanding 37-16 halftime lead.

Evangel Christian went on a brief 6-2 run in the early moments of the third quarter to pull within 39-22, but Magdalena put up 20 straight points to take a 59-22 lead into the fourth quarter and put any doubts on the final outcome to rest.

Despite the fact the level of competition will only increase for the young Steers, the dominating win serves as a small shot of confidence for a team having to replace a bevy of talent.

“Losing 10 of 12 players off a varsity team, you’re always a little bit apprehensive going into a season because you don’t know what you have,” Mirabal said. “It makes me feel good to see we’ve got some leadership, and it carries over to the other players.”

And fortunately for this year’s version of the Steers, their run and gun style of play already seems to fit with a deep team chalked with speed, quickness and the apparent ability to make good decisions. But while Mag played a nearly flawless game, no good coach is ever satisfied.

“We want to make sure that we are able to, when we’re playing with that kind of speed and that tempo, we want to control things and get the things we want at the same time,” Mirabal said.

“That’s just going to come with more maturity.”

Junior post Sedrick Apachito finished with 12 points and proved a force in the paint, while sophomore J.B. Britton scored six points.

Junior point guard Mike Sedillo led the Eagles with 10 points.

The Steers will play today either at 2 p.m. or 5:30 p.m., depending on the outcome of last night’s game. For more information see the sports section at www.dchieftain.com.