Incline clinches tie for Northern 2A League title by beating Whittell | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Incline clinches tie for Northern 2A League title by beating Whittell

Steve Yingling, Tribune sports editor

Steve Yingling / Tahoe Daily TribuneWhittell High junior Blake Heldt-Werle drives in for a layup in the second half of a Northern 2A League game against Incline on Tuesday in Zephyr Cove.

ZEPHYR COVE – After watching Incline High dismantle his Whittell boys’ basketball team by more than 30 points for the second time in less than week, Warriors’ coach Tyler Rose said he wouldn’t mind playing the Highlanders a third time.

“We always want to play the best competition,” Rose said following a 61-30 Northern 2A League defeat to the Highlanders on Tuesday night.

In notching their 20th win of the season, the Highlanders had little trouble with the Warriors, jumping out to a 9-0 lead several minutes into the game. Oftentimes the Highlanders didn’t even dribble ball, whipping passes around the perimeter before finding the open cutter going to the basket.

“They are good,” Rose said. “They move the ball quick and penetrate with such aggression and control, and it looks like they have played together for 10 years.”

The Highlanders clinched at least a tie for the league title with their 11th straight win without a loss. Incline coach Dan Shreiber said his team may have accomplished a first by posting a season sweep of the Lake Tahoe schools – North Tahoe, Whittell, South Tahoe and Truckee.

Whittell made just three of 24 first-half field goal attempts against a man-to-man defense as the Highlanders built a 31-10 lead.

Recommended Stories For You

“Our game plan tonight was not to rely so much on the perimeter game,” said Schreiber, whose team made 10 three-point shots in a 41-point win against the Warriors last week. “We wanted the post to touch the ball as much as possible coming down the floor, then just run and make sure we were constantly pushing the ball up the floor.”

Sam Witt made sure that the Warriors didn’t mount a rally by scoring eight of his 14 points in the third quarter as Incline extended its edge to 30 points. Incline’s bench produced 28 points, including 10 by sophomore Patrick Murray and six each by senior Ryan Lee and sophomore Max Osborne.

“We have good young kids who got a lot of playing time, and also gave our starters a great rest going into Lovelock on Friday – a tough place to play,” Schreiber said. “You never know when these young kids might called upon … foul trouble, injuries, whatever it might be.”

Whittell senior Cody Nelson played fearlessly against the Highlanders, slicing inside the paint for many of his baskets. Nelson led all scorers with 15 points, including 13 in the second half. Blake Heldt-Werle added seven points, and John Robinson grabbed seven rebounds.

“We played intimidated and scared,” Rose said. “That’s the wrong mentality going into a game like that. They can take a 30-point loss, but not that way. If they are going to take a 30-point loss, the other team has to earn it.”

Whittell (1-8 league) will play a nonleague game Wednesday at Dayton.

Incline also won the JV game, outscoring Whittell 13-4 in the fourth period for a 50-37 win.

Wright’s free throws seal Incline girls’ win

Katie Wright made four straight free throws inside the final half minute of play to preserve Incline’s 35-25 girls’ basketball victory at Whittell on Tuesday night.

Gabriella Tracy’s steal and layup with about 2 minutes to go brought Whittell within 30-25, but Incline made five free throws down the stretch to seal the win.

Whittell, which dropped to 0-7 in league play, was led by Isabel Concha-Foley’s 10 points and 10 rebounds. Tracy chipped in eight points, making four of the Warriors’ nine field goals.

Kelli Cherry topped Incline with nine points.