Although the Brookfield boys' basketball team managed to keep the game fairly close in the early stages of the game, the Bulldogs' deficit swelled consistently and Palmyra breezed by on Tuesday evening.
In the Bulldogs' first home game since the first day of December, they were downed 73-38.
With the defeat, the Bulldogs fall to 1-13 and 0-2 in Clarence Cannon Conference play. Palmyra sits at 13-5.
Bulldog coach Jerod Gillman said that his team's defensive output in the waning portion of the first half was lacking.
"Effort might not be the right word, we definitely exert ourselves," Gillman said, "but we've got a lot of guys that, when we get in a situation to help or slide over or take a charge, they just didn't want to do it. That'll be something that we have to address."
Brookfield scrapped in the first quarter, trailing by just a point after a Wyatt Reed putback with 1:40 remaining in the frame. From that point onward in the first, Palmyra scored the final seven points, and outscored Brookfield 24-12 in the second period as the Bulldogs racked up turnovers at every possible turn.
Gillman said that the full-court pressure the Bulldogs were given was not the root cause of most of the team's giveaways.
"The turnovers were mostly the result of poor fundamental passing, and even more so, just catching the ball," Gillman said. "For the better part of the first half, it wasn't just their press. We had many opportunities to score, and didn't cash them in. It's fundamental stuff, we know that, and that's our focus."
Brookfield scored 12 points again in the third quarter, although by that point the game was well in the bag in the Panthers' favor.
The most notable occurrences in the second half were the last thing in the world the Bulldogs needed -- a pair of injuries. Recently-healthy sophomore point guard Nick Jones sustained an injury to the knee, and for a moment, the blue-and-white faithful thought that the dreaded three-letter injury may have befallen them. Jones walked under his own volition later in the game, but never returned. Just a few moments later, Reed required a few minutes before he was able to make it off of the court.
Jones led his team with 10 points, and Cooper Cisna finished with eight.
The Bulldogs play again Friday evening in Ewing. Highland enters the game 3-21 with all three of its wins coming against teams from Illinois.