SOUTHEAST GLENDALE — The game plan for the Glendale High boys' basketball team going into its Pacific League showdown with rival Hoover was simple.
Feed the big guy down low.
Not a bad plan considering the Nitros' starting center Arthur Terzyan measures 6-foot-6 and 260 pounds.
Behind a big game from their big man, Glendale defeated Hoover, 68-51, at home on Friday.
Terzyan finished with 19 points and 19 rebounds.
“You know, we got our big guy going big time,” said Glendale Coach Steve Snodgress. “I think that established the inside-out early for us and it gave them something to deal with on the defensive end close to the basket. We figured if we get him going early it would just put us going in the right direction and make them adjust.”
After a three-game losing streak, Glendale improved to 8-11 overall and 3-4 in Pacific League. Hoover fell to 9-10 and 1-6.
“It's really big,” Snodgress said. “There's not a lot of difference between the two teams physically.”
Glendale started out strong and took a 28-15 lead into halftime and extended that advantage to 37-20 midway through the third period.
With Terzyan patrolling the middle, the Tornadoes relied on jump shots from outside for their offense.
“That's what we do usually,” said Hoover coach Jack Van Patten. “We're not really big.”
After starting the game ice cold, the Tornadoes finally got going in the third. Down, 37-20, Jash Francisco knocked down back-to-back three pointers, and teammate Teo Davidian added five unanswered points as Hoover went on a 15-2 run to pull to within 39-35.
“I know they're a better shooting team than that,” Snodgress said of his opponent's early shooting woes.
Glendale beat back Hoover's rally behind multiple opportunities at the free-throw line and timely three-pointers to win going away.
“It's always a good game, not only for bragging rights, but it's the middle of the season,” Terzyan said. “Whoever wins this game seems to get momentum going into the second half of the season.”
Terzyan used his size advantage in orchestrating a number of different offensive looks while also dominating the glass en route to the double-double.
“Coach preached that we should pound it in the middle,” Terzyan said. “I just tried to do what I could and my teammates did a good job finding me.”
For Glendale, Vahe Aristakessian added 15 points and teammate Daryoush Rahimi added 13 rebounds.
Hoover was paced by Davidian with 16 points and seven rebounds and Francisco with 15 points.