Austin Morgan is still recovering from two torn ligaments in his left ankle.
On Thursday, the sophomore guard refused to let any injury stop him from making clutch plays for Boulder City’s boys basketball team.
Morgan hit a go-ahead 3-pointer and two insurance free throws in a 40-39 win over host Lake Mead, then helped Boulder City roll to a 54-10 rout of Lutheran (Calif.) to win both of their opening-day games at the Lake Mead Holiday Classic.
“He’s been hurt for two weeks, and we’re just trying to slowly work him back into it,” Boulder City coach John Balistere said of Morgan. “Sometimes you just go with your gut, and he can shoot the ball. We’re a lot better when he’s on the floor.”
Boulder City followed its 2-0 start to the tournament with a 59-44 nonleague loss at Chaparral on Thursday night.
Morgan’s 3-pointer from the left corner gave Boulder City a 36-34 lead against Lake Mead with just less than two minutes to play. He then sank two free throws with 18.9 seconds remaining to give Boulder City a 40-37 cushion.
“After the first one falls, it’s a lot easier for the second one,” Morgan said of his free throws. “I just knew I had to take the pressure and deal with it.”
Morgan finished with 10 points against Lake Mead, and Nate Hafen supplied six points and seven rebounds. Boulder City (2-2) had nine players score.
“Not only do we have a balance of shooters, we’re very interchangeable,” Morgan said.
Boulder City’s depth helped overcome a 23-point effort from Lake Mead guard Justin Yamzon, who shot 10-for-11 at the free-throw line. Caleb Pitman added 12 points and two blocks for Lake Mead.
Against Lutheran, Boulder City’s Kaleb Bailey scored all 12 of his points in the first half, and teammate D.J. Koopman finished with 12 points, seven rebounds and two steals. Tanner Howell added 11 points for the Eagles, and Morgan had six points and three rebounds.
“We’re big and we’re deep, and we’ve just got to learn to trust each other and play as a team,” Balistere said. “We’ve got enough guys who can play multiple positions.”
The 12-team tournament resumes at 10:30 a.m. today, with the Blue Bracket title game set for 3:30 p.m. Saturday at Lake Mead.
The Meadows 46, Spring Mountain 23 — At Lake Mead, Max Newman scored 16 points as the Mustangs cruised past the Eagles.
Marquion White had seven points for Spring Mountain.
The Meadows 50, Calvary (Calif.) 32 — At Lake Mead, Newman hit four 3-pointers on his way to 18 points to lead the Mustangs to the win.
Garrett Gosse had 12 points and Eric Hirsberg scored 11 for The Meadows, which led 18-1 midway through the first half.
Justin Harrison scored 14 points for Calvary.
Lake Mead 37, Lutheran (Calif.) 26 — At Lake Mead, Caleb Pitman scored 12 points and Jordon Tillman added 11 points as the Eagles rallied past the Knights.
Jon Iverson scored 12 points for Lutheran, which couldn’t hold on to an early 14-4 lead.
Calvary (Calif.) 57, Spring Mountain 36 — At Lake Mead, Trace Scheckel and Christian Quidang scored 16 points apiece to power the Royal Knights by the Eagles.
Harrison added 12 points for Calvary, which outscored Spring Mountain 29-12 in the second half.
White scored 12 points for Spring Mountain, and Roemello Brandon had six points, 11 rebounds and two steals for the Eagles.
Fernley 56, Oasis Christian 17 — At Lake Mead, Cade Knutson scored 23 points to lead the Vaqueros past the Bulldogs.
Samuel Carnicle led Oasis Christian with six points.
Pahranagat Valley 41, Oasis Christian 21 — At Lake Mead, Tyler Higbee scored 11 points to lead the Panthers by the Bulldogs.
Sean Barragan paced Oasis Christian with six points.
Fernley 32, Pahranagat Valley 20 — At Lake Mead, Knutson scored 15 points as the Vaqueros beat the Panthers.
Austin Poulsen and Higbee each scored five points for Pahranagat Valley.
Calvary Chapel 34, Word of Life 16 — At Calvary Chapel, Bobby Buist had16 points to lead the Lions past the Eagles.
Drew Hammond added eight points for Calvary Chapel.
Abundant Life (Utah) 35, Calvary Chapel 25 — At Calvary Chapel, David Flanagan led all scorers with 25 points to help lead the Warriors defeat the Lions.
Drew Hammond led Calvary Chapel with 11 points.
Abundant Life 28, Word of Life 22 — At Calvary Chapel, Flanagan scored 19 points to help lead the Warriors to a victory over the Eagles.
Amecha Okafor led Word of Life with eight points.
Indian Springs 27, Calvary Chapel 22 — At Calvary Chapel, Alexxa Reinke and Heather Thormahlen accounted for all of the Thunderbirds’ scoring in a win over the Lions.
Reinke scored 16, and Thormahlen added 11 points.
Phallen Nelson led Calvary Chapel with eight points.
Indian Springs 25, Lutheran (Calif.) 19 — At Calvary Chapel, Reinke had 19 points as the Thunderbirds rallied from a 12-11 halftime deficit to top Lutheran.
Calvary Chapel 40, Oasis Christian 11 — At Calvary Chapel, Lianne Reyes scored 14 points as the Lions built a 22-7 lead and downed the Bulldogs.
Nelson added 12 points for Calvary Chapel.
Calvary (Calif.) 23, The Meadows 9 — At Calvary Chapel, Calvary overcame a sluggish first half, in which it held only an 8-4 lead, to top the Mustangs.
Lake Mead 40, Lutheran (Calif.) 22 — At Lake Mead, Taylor Badua-Kono poured in 19 points and Shannon Regan scored 14 to lead the Eagles to the victory.