Warriors go out fighting | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Warriors go out fighting

Steve Yingling, Tribune sports editor

They call them free throws, but there wasn’t anything free about the shots Whittell High was taking in the fourth quarter on Friday night in Hawthorne.

Leading by eight points late in the fourth period, the Warriors repeatedly misfired at the foul line, enabling the Serpents to storm back for a 46-41 Northern Nevada 2A League boys’ basketball victory.

“We couldn’t make our free throws,” said WHS senior Jake Summers. “We were ahead the whole game, then we broke down and they got back in the game.

“We gave them a run for their money. It was a good, hard basketball game.”

The Warriors shot 47.4 percent from the foul line, only making 9 out of 19, as

Hawthorne avoided going into this week’s division tournament on a downer.

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Many of the eight free throws the Warriors missed in the fourth quarter were the front end of 1-and-1s.

Fatigue could have attributed to the Warriors’ struggles at the line since coach Brian Mehrer brought six varsity regulars to Hawthorne. Two players were away on vacation and a third was sick.

As a result, Mehrer called up three players from the junior varsity.

“I was very impressed,” Mehrer said. “It was our last game of the season, we were out of the playoff picture and they came out strong.”

Of the three JV players, freshman Chris Craig made the most impact. Craig entered the game in the second period and scored four quick points. He finished with five.

“He wasn’t intimidated at all. It looked like he had been playing varsity ball all season,” Mehrer said.

Whittell finished 3-11 in division play and 4-19 overall.

The Serpents outscored Whittell 18-6 during the final 8 minutes to wipe out a 35-28 lead after three periods.

Summers was one of three Warriors to score in double figures.

Senior Bryan Jones led Whittell with 11 points and Summers and Chris Shapiro scored 10. Shapiro made two 3-pointers and Summers connected on one.