Highlanders shellac Warriors in season opener
Gravity just doesn’t seem to work the same on the North Shore, because when the Incline Highlanders pressed it seemed to carry a lot more weight.
The Highlanders dominated the Warriors from start to finish Tuesday in the Nevada 2A League opener for both teams. The Highlander girls’ team won 50-12 and the boys won 71-33.
Jessica Fortin led Incline with 19 points, 11 of which were in the first quarter and Kristi Cole had 12. On the boys’ side, Kevin Dyess led with 21 and Matthew Baker had 20.
Both Incline teams used the press to rattle the Warriors. Neither Whittell team looked settled or seemed to get comfortable.
The girls’ varsity took a 16-2 lead after the first quarter. The boys led by the same score in the first three minutes.
“Incline was very aggressive on defense,” said Whittell coach Brian Mehrer. “Our three sophomores are very young and they need to learn how to handle that kind of pressure.”
The Warriors recently lost four players, including two starters. Mehrer brought up three sophomores to fill in the gaps.
Brian Jones led with 12 points.
“All in all, we had a good practice with the kids we have. We’re a young team and our JV guys just have to step it up and it will take awhile for them to do that,” Mehrer said. “They have the skills; they’re just not used to the intensity at the varsity level.”
The Incline girls capitalized on transitions and 26 Warrior turnovers, making quick buckets throughout. They took a 26-4 lead with about three minutes to go in the half.
Incline coach Bill Devine said the Highlanders had a problem keeping their intensity when they were leading after the half. So Incline pressed for the first few minutes in the third, then called the press off when Whittell continued to struggle. The Highlanders took a 48-9 lead after three quarters.
Devine took Fortin, Jen Fuetsch and Cole out of the game in the fourth quarter and played his second string.
“We knew coming in that those three would be tough to stop,” said Warrior girls’ coach Lindsay Wines. “We tried to focus on them but just couldn’t get it done.”
Whittell’s JV girls won 35-22. The boys lost 66-37.
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