LOVELAND — Bruce Dick has been around the block.
The boys basketball coach has won over 500 games in three coaching stints at Green Mountain (where he claimed a state title), Rocky Mountain, and now at Resurrection Christian in Loveland. He’s had success at the big school level.
On Friday at Rez, the Class 2A No. 2-ranked Cougars (12-0 overall) played like a 5A power in dismantling No. 3 Highland (12-1) 93-47 in a showdown between two undefeated teams.
“This is a team that would compete with so many of my past teams from Green Mountain and Rocky Mountain,” Dick said. “This is a good bunch of basketball players and great kids. I’m very thankful to be able to coach them.”
RCS, in front a raucous crowd, gave their fans much to be grateful for at both ends of the court.
After a closely contested 17-12 first quarter lead, the Cougars preyed on Highland’s offense in forcing 31 total turnovers, 17 of which came in the first half. Rez led 41-24 at the break.
“They played with great composure early and then just extended it and got on fire,” Dick raved. “Our defense is what got us on fire. Our defense is what really turned the game.”
A team averaging an all-classification best 85.5 points per game entering Friday, the Cougars unleashed perhaps their best weapon in the third.
Sophomore guard Tanner Ervin, a five-foot-seven dynamo and the team’s leading scorer, attempted nine three-pointers in the quarter. Five found net during a wild 17 point individual outburst. Resurrection Christian laid down a 31-9 licking of a quarter to lead 72-33 headed into the final frame.
Ervin was quick to credit his teammates for his blistering third.
“It goes back to unselfishness,” the sophomore said. “Everyone can get to the basket and that’s huge. We execute, get to the basket, draw the defense, and then I was just spotting up. My teammates were doing the rest.”
Ervin, who averages 19.4 points per game, finished with seven three-pointers on 16 attempts, buried seven of eight free throws, and scored 30 points, a new career high.
The sophomore’s shooting barrage put the crowd in a frenzy, but he wasn’t alone in the scoring department as teammates Luke Fick (14), Michael Stevenson (13), Kyle Lahr (11), Koby Bishop (10), and Luke Mondt (10) all contributed. Fick made seven of eight shots for a team that cashed 54 percent of their field goals.
“We have a lot of balance and they really like each other,” Dick said of his explosive offense. “They don’t care who scores. We have certain guys who will score a lot. One of our biggest faults in some games is that we’ve over passed even. They hang around each other, they like each other, and they’ve set some goals to try and achieve together.”
The Resurrection Christian defense held the Huskies to 37 percent shooting and limited Kadyn Hicks, 2A’s scoring leader at a clip of 26.2 per outing entering Friday, to 14 points.
Rez, 5-0 in the Mile High League and a team whose closest win this season was by 20 points over The Dawson School on January 13, appear poised for a run at the 2A crown, even if their coach avoids discussing it.
“We don’t talk about winning,” Dick noted. “We just talk about doing the right things, playing the right way, and if we take care of ourselves on and off the floor, good things will happen.”
“There’s a lot of good teams,” Ervin added.