BURBANK — The Glendale High boys' basketball team's fortunes often rise and fall with its outside shooting, but even though their accuracy from the field during Tuesday's Burbank High Summer League game left much to be desired, the Nitros refused to be typecast into a loss.
Instead, they buckled down and controlled the boards against a bigger North Hollywood squad and used defense to get some easy transition offense en route to a 44-35 win, despite missing starters Anthony Tahmazian (knee infection) and Linden Anderson (football).
"We really only had one flurry where we played well offensively," Glendale Coach Steve Snodgress said in reference to a stretch midway through the fourth quarter where the Nitros went on an 8-3 run. "As a group, I thought we were playing fairly cohesively, we just couldn't get the ball to go in. I'll live with that right now, because I really did see some growth with guys playing as a unit."
Glendale, which was led by David Yetenikyan with 10 points, 13 rebounds and two steals, rebounded well as a team, out boarding North Hollywood, 35-20, a disparity that helped soften the effect of the Nitros' 14 for 46 shooting performance.
"We outworked them and we boxed out really well," Yetenikyan said. "All the positions helped out on the rebounds, not just the fours and fives, but the point guards, the shooting guards, they all helped out."
Point guard Steven Gasparian, who led the Nitros in scoring with 12 points, sank a deep three with 2:40 left in the fourth quarter to give Glendale a 40-29 lead before making a pair of free throws to ice the game with 25 seconds to play.
Glendale carried a 22-15 lead into halftime, but saw North Hollywood cut the margin to one point three minutes into the third quarter. Despite suffering through a field-goal drought for the first 8:30 of the period, the Nitros never lost the lead and had a five-point lead going into the fourth quarter after Yetenikyan's turnaround off the glass.
An alley-oop pass from Gasparian that Yetenikyan finished with a layup put Glendale up, 32-25, inside the first minute of the final quarter, but North Hollywood had another run left.
With their lead down to three at the 7:00 mark, the Nitros stabilized the lead with a Yetenikyan putback, followed by a Gasparian fast-break finish set up by Edmond Tahmazian's steal.
"Since we couldn't get really good outside shots," Yetenikyan said, "we decided to penetrate more and fast breaks were open."