SENECA — Brett Fanning’s description of the season opener was simple.
“It was exhausting,” the Hall senior said.
Fanning and the Red Devils ran up and down the court all night Monday as they opened the season with a 92-70 victory over Reed-Custer on the first day of the Seneca Thanksgiving Turkey Tournament.
“This was ridiculous,” said Fanning, who poured in a game-high 32 points and grabbed a game-high 13 rebounds. “It was fun though. Really fun.”
The Red Devils set tournament records for points in a game and field goals made in a game (39), while the 162 combined points and 67 combined field goals made also are tournament records.
“We like to push the ball, but that was crazy,” said Hall coach Mike Filippini, who added he couldn’t remember being part of such a high-scoring game at Hall. “It seemed like a summer out there — up and down the court and layup after layup. Coming in as the first game, you don’t know what to expect. We knew what they were going to play on defense, but offensively, we didn’t know what they were going to do. That was some insane basketball.”
Hall a little trouble early with Reed-Custer’s trapping defense — turning the ball over on five of its first 10 possessions — but the Red Devils eventually followed their plan and began to break the pressure for easy layups.
“It was just making ball fakes and getting the ball to the middle of the court, and once we got the ball (in the middle), just turning and looking opposite,” Filippini said. “I think they shocked us right at the start. Once we settled down, we were fine. … It wasn’t an adjustment. We just started doing what we’re supposed to be doing.”
The Red Devils fell behind 10-4 with 4:44 left in the first quarter but roared back after figuring out the defense, scoring on seven of their final eight possessions of the opening frame to take a 21-16 lead.
“We just kept reversing the ball as fast as possible,” Fanning said. “Not like hot potato, but control the game and play at our tempo. It worked out.”
Hall never trailed after the first quarter.
The Red Devils took a 48-31 halftime lead, led by as many as 23 points in the second half and never allowed Reed-Custer to pull closer than 11 points.
“That’s a hard first game, especially for some of those juniors who have never played varsity basketball before,” Filippini said. “We had a ton of kids make great contributions.”
Hall had three players in double figures along with Fanning. Senior Taylor Steele had 17 points and nine rebounds off the bench, Matt Boucher scored 12 of his 14 points in the first half and Miguel Villarreal added 11 points and six assists.
“Boucher had a heck of a game and (it was) pretty unexpected,” Filippini said. “Matt got some playing time last year (but not a lot). He carried us in the first half. Without him, we don’t win the game.”
The Red Devils face Somonauk (0-1) at 5 tonight in their second pool play game.
Kevin Chlum can be reached at 220-6939, or at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @NT_SportsEditor.