Whittell High School boys basketball falls to Mineral County | TahoeDailyTribune.com

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Whittell High School boys basketball falls to Mineral County

After a long winter break, defending state champion Whittell Warriors (7-7 on the season, 3-1 in the division) returned to action to face the Mineral County Serpents (11-5 on the season, 6-0 in the division). In this the first of two meetings between the division 1A powerhouses, the Serpents walked away with a tough road victory beating Whittell 64-37

As the game started both teams' defenses were on display. Neither could pull away as Whittell, sparked by clutch shooting by Nic Buchholz and a smothering full-court press defense, kept it close at half being down 25-31.

The second half was plagued by Whittell turnovers and Mineral County's Andre Davis (23 points) took full advantage. Mineral County stepped up the defense after the half, only allowing 12 points.

Whittell played hard in the loss, led by Nic Buchholz (eight points, one assist), Sam Berry (three points, six rebounds, three steals), and Troy Libbert (seven points, five rebounds, one block)

Despite the loss, Whittell coach Phil Bryant said he felt optimistic about the results of the game.

"It was tough to play with only one practice in the past week due to snow and our gym was closed. But, you can't beat anyone when you turn the ball over 29 times. We struggled on offense but played hard and just didn't get the results we wanted," Bryant said. "We are still in a good spot and just one game out of first place. Our guys love a challenge and they will bounce back stronger than ever."

Whittell (3-1 in division play and 7-7 on the season) returned to action Tuesday, after press deadline, at home in a division game against Excell Christian Academy (1-3 in division play and 1-6 on the season).