NORTHEAST GLENDALE — Glendale High boys' basketball Coach Steve Snodgress didn't necessarily mind being without a couple of key starters for Friday afternoon's Glendale Community College Tournament pool-play game against Maranatha.
With Anthony Tahmazian attending to academic matters and Linden Anderson across town playing in a football passing tournament, the veteran Nitros Coach figured he would give his bench players a chance to show what they could do.
For the most part, neither the Nitros' bench nor their remaining starters were able to find much offensive consistency in the 49-43 loss, made close down the stretch by a surprise contribution from reserve guard Arem Ohanian, who scored nine points, which shared the team high, on three of four three-point shooting.
"Arem came off the bench and played really well, nobody could hit a shot," Snodgress said. "Today was an opportunity for kids to get some more minutes with us down Linden and Anthony and here was a good shot for them in the summer to play extended periods of time."
Starting guard Suren Gyurgchyan also gave Glendale a spark in the second half, scoring all of his nine points on four-for-seven shooting in the second half after misfiring on his only three attempts in the first half.
The Nitros fell behind by their largest deficit, 30-18, with 14:00 to play in the game after a Maranatha three-point play followed by a layup off a Nitros turnover.
Charlie Miller (nine points) intervened for Glendale with a three-pointer seconds later and Gyurgchyan sped the length of the floor for a layup to cut it to 30-23 with 13:00 left.
Ohanian checked in and buried his first three at the 10:30 mark to keep Glendale within six and hit another one on Glendale's next possession to cut the lead to 34-31.
Two minutes later, Ohanian converted from long range again to bring the Nitros within one at 37-36 and Gyurgchyan tied it at 39 with a three of his own not long after.
Glendale took its first lead of the second half, 41-39, at the 4:30 mark, when Gyurgchyan cut to the basket and converted on a nice pass from David Yetenikyan (six points, 13 rebounds). But Maranatha kept answering and iced the game on free throws when Glendale missed a reverse layup attempt that would have tied the game with under a minute to go.
"We had a lot of guys go one for eight, one for nine going against the zone," said Snodgress, whose team made just six of 25 three-point attempts and shot 18% from the field overall in the first half. "That put us in a hole, we had a nice comeback. …There was a couple positives, but all in all, to win a game in that kind of situation, you've gotta play harder and be more aggressive in terms of your offense. We just hung out and relied on the outside shot and none of them were going today."
Glendale, which beat Keppel, 56-47, on Thursday, finished in a three-way tie in its pool and ended up in second place by virtue of a point-differential tiebreaker. The Nitros will take on Hoover, which also finished second in it pool, at 1:30 p.m. today.