By Larry Gage
Special to the PRESS
It was a late start to the 2020-’21 basketball season, and the Port Isabel Tarpons hoops squad take a 1-1 record into this Friday’s home game against La Joya Palmview.
The Tarpons had it all together this past Tuesday when they handed IDEA Weslaco Pike a 64-48 defeat at Tarpon Gym. And last Saturday Port Isabel lost a close one, 62-60, to Santa Rosa, also at Tarpon Gym.
It was almost a start-to-finish win for the Tarpons Tuesday as they trailed only once, 2-1, in the early moments of the game. P.I. went up 3-2 and led by as many as nine in the second quarter before IDEA fought back, and it was 28-25, Port Isabel, at the break.
In the second half the Tarpons stretched their lead to as many as 21 points, 62-41 and 64-43, in the fourth quarter.
It was 12-8, Port Isabel, at the end of the first period, 28-25 at the half, and the Tarpons were up 53-34 at the end of three.
“That’s how I’d sum it up,” Port Isabel head boys basketball coach Mike Hazelton said after the game. “They showed a lot of hustle. (Weslaco is) an experienced team. They’ve played 11 or 12 games. They do a good job coaching those kids – they play well.”
One Tarpon in particular who showed some hustle was junior Gilbert Medina. In the first quarter he made consecutive steals, and scored on a layup each time to put the home team up 12-5 with a minute to go in the period.
Senior Cole Pinkerton had his outside shot going as he made three three-point shots in the second quarter, his third one practically from the south stands at the east basket. The Tarpons led 24-15 at that point. Pinkerton added a fourth trey in the fourth quarter.
“He was ready to go,” Coach Hazelton said afterwards. “He got his shots up, he took good shots, and if he was open he was going to hit them. They started paying more attention to him in the second half, and he was a good teammate, finding the open man.”
Pinkerton totaled 17 points on the night.
The Tarpons will be at home for the third time in as many games this Friday, Dec. 18, when they will host La Joya Palmview at Tarpon Gym. A 6:30 p.m. tip-off is scheduled.