MODESTO The holiday blues kicked in a little earlier than expected for the Bret Harte High School boys' basketball team in the opening round of the Modesto Christian Tournament on Thursday.
Facing future NCAA Division I player Jordan Farmar from Taft of Woodland Hills, the Bullfrogs (5-6) fell behind 36-23 by halftime before staging a fourth quarter comeback that was too little, too late.
"Playing a big school like Taft, I think it was more intimidation at the outset than anything else," Bret Harte coach Jerry Rucker said. "But we woke up a little in the fourth quarter."
Trailing 52-32 through three quarters, Bret Harte found its range in the fourth quarter as the Frogs outscored Taft 25-16 in the final period for a more respectable 11-point loss the same margin of defeat as last year when the two teams met.
Farmar, a junior who is being scouted by Gonzaga and Stanford, and Matt Cook led Taft with 23 points apiece.
Travis Emerson paced the Frogs with 20 points, followed by Guy Castle (11 points) and Aaron Elevi (10 points).
Bret Harte faced Hercules at 10 a.m. today in the final game of pool play. Following the conclusion of today's pool play, the 24-team tournament was broken into three eight-team brackets (gold, silver and bronze brackets) with quarterfinals scheduled for this evening.
The Frogs will play at least one game on Saturday and could play as many as two
BH girls win opener
The Bullfrogs (6-5) held Central Catholic to a mere three points in the second half as they doubled up the Raiders 42-21 in the first round of the Ripon Christian Tournament on Thursday.
Alyssa Cheney led eight BH scorers with 10 points.
Bret Harte plays Oakdale at 6 p.m. today.