Foothill coach Wesley Davis' biggest concern this year has been his team's propensity for not always playing its best during the late stages of close games.
That bug-a-boo proved to be the downfall of the Trojans during the Gold Division championship game of the Garces Holiday Hoops Challenge on Saturday night.
Foothill led at the end of each of the first three quarters before struggling in the fourth and losing 79-69 to Visalia-Redwood.
Edward Turner scored a game-high 31 points and grabbed 14 rebounds for the Trojans, who beat the Rangers in tournament pool play on Thursday.
Turner was 10 of 15 shooting from the field while recording five blocked shots and four steals.
But his stellar play wasn't enough for Foothill, which committed 24 turnovers, including eight in the pivotal fourth quarter.
"(Our inability to close out games) is an issue," Davis said. "If we can clean it up by league and playoff time then we're going to be ok."
Redwood (9-6) saved its best effort for the game's final eight minutes. The Rangers made 12 of 18 shots from the floor during the fourth quarter as they rallied from a 52-48 third-quarter deficit.
"We just slacked off on defense in the second half," Turner said. "We could have easily won this game, but we didn't have enough heart. They just wanted it more than us."
Ryzek McRoberts led Redwood in scoring with 20 points. Nathan Treece added 16 points for the Rangers.
Treece did most his damage in the fourth quarter, when he tallied 11 points including back-to-back baskets that tied the game and then put Redwood ahead for good with just over five minutes remaining.
Foothill (10-7) came on strong and led by as many as 10 points in the first quarter.
"There were a couple of times I thought we were going to break it open," Davis said. "It's just kind of the inexperience of being in championship-big moment games, where it has to translate. You have to get the to the loose-ball rebounds. You have to be able to step out on the shots and contest them."
The Trojans controlled the game early by using their athleticism to force turnovers on defense and then turn them into points with fast break layups.
Turner excelled in transition. The 6-foot-7 junior ran the floor hard and got ahead of Redwood's defense several times, leading to highlight reel dunks.
However, the Rangers didn't let Turner's crowd-pleasing jams rattle them.
Redwood just kept playing solid basketball and steadily chipped away at Foothill's lead, eventually breaking through by out-scoring the Trojans 31-17 in the fourth quarter.
Redwood got contributions from players up and down its roster, as ten different players scored for them.
"We did start off slow," Redwood coach Ken Ruby said. "That's kind of been out M.O., but I think the more patience we have throughout the game, and belief in ourselves that we can get it done carried us through."