ST. PETERSBURG — Randy Shuman kept a poker face after his team's victory at the Northeast Shootout on Saturday night.
Boca Ciega's defense was merciless against Admiral Farragut, cruising to a 62-43 victory, and Shuman seemed content with the progress his team has made over the last couple of weeks.
"We're finally starting to put some things together," Shuman said. "It's pretty much an all new group for us this year, and we're trying to experiment and figure out what works best for us.
"The last couple of games we've been doing a lot better with the pressure defense."
Pressure is a bit of an understatement as Boca Ciega (7-8) forced 24 turnovers and held Admiral Farragut (7-6) to its lowest point total of the season.
Boca Ciega guard Dallas Moore was providing pressure on both ends of the floor. He had two steals himself and was involved in a few more. The Pirates hassled the Blue Jackets on inbounds plays and set traps throughout the court.
"We're doing better as a team, and we're doing a much better job communicating," said Moore, who finished with a game-high 28 points. "At the beginning of the year we didn't have any chemistry, and now we're starting to get it and just connect with each other."
Moore got the Pirates momentum going, scoring 14 first-quarter points and leading his team on a 15-1 run to end that quarter. Boca Ciega never trailed after the first.
"We're not trying to look ahead; we're not trying to look behind. Just focusing on the future," Moore said.
Lakewood (10-2) defeated Tampa Catholic (10-4) 65-53 in the first game of the Shootout. Jacobi Boykins led the Spartans with 19 points.
Palm Harbor University (6-12) ran away with a 51-33 victory over Dixie Hollins (0-10) in the following game. And host Northeast (7-8) outlasted Sunlake (5-7) 70-57 in the final contest of the night.