The Bowie Jackrabbits opened their season on the road at Grandview on Saturday, suffering through early season growing pains in the loss.
The Zebras won the game 63-52, but a late surge from the Jackrabbits left a good lasting impression despite the loss.
Grandview was missing some players to football, but early on found success from outside. Driving into the lane before kicking it outside for open 3-point shots, Bowie’s defense was just a step behind.
The Zebras led 21-13 after the first quarter and made four 3-pointers.
The Jackrabbits came back strong in the second quarter, coming back from double-digits to cut the lead to 31-27 late in the quarter thanks to some easy quick points in transition.
Grandview extended the lead a bit before halftime, but Bowie was still in striking distance 36-28.
The Jackrabbits did not start the third quarter well. Early turnovers did no favors in getting the offense into any sort of rhythm. The Zebras continued to score at a good rate thanks to some of those turnovers, extending their lead to double-digits. Grandview led 55-37 heading into the final quarter.
Coach Andy Atkins decided to try and force the action and make sure none of his players would be able to coast towards what was looking like an inevitable loss.
Atkins had tried many types of defenses throughout the game and started pressing and trapping sometime in the third quarter. With the backs against the wall and down 20 plus points early in the fourth, the team’s energy with the full-court press defense picked up and good things started to happen.
Grandview players started to get frustrated with the physical play and calls not going their way as Bowie slowly started to gain momentum.
Turnovers did not directly lead to easy points though.
The Jackrabbits could not get a 3-pointer to land in the final quarter, but the team made all seven of their free throws which was almost half of their points in the fourth.
Down 21 points with a little less than six minutes to play, Bowie had cut the lead to 10 points 62-52 with 1:15 left to play. If the Jackrabbits could force a couple more turnovers that led to quick points, it looked like a comeback might be possible.
Unfortunately, those points did not come. Grandview made one free throw and Bowie failed to score any more points as it ran out of gas and time. The final score was 63-52.
Bowie’s next scheduled game is at 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 20 at Gainesville.
To read the full story, pick up a copy of the mid-week edition of the Bowie News