Raiders jump on Vikings
SPARKS – Cliches such as “ran into a buzz saw” and “taken behind the woodshed” are supposed to avoided like the plague. It’s what any self-respecting journalism instructor would tell their students.
However, those phrases are the only way to describe South Tahoe’s game against Reed on Tuesday night in the first round of the Northern 4A Regional boys’ basketball tournament.
The Raiders used runs of 22-0 and 17-2 in the first half, then continued the punishment in the second as they rolled to a 77-51 win at Reed High School.
“We’re a good-shooting team, and when we can put together some runs like that, that’s us,” Reed coach Paul Gray said. “We just caught them on an off night. If they catch us on an off night, the opposite could happen.”
The Raiders (20-8) will play Hug in the Northern 4A semifinals on Thursday night. Galena will play Reno in the other semifinal. Both games are at Carson High School.
If Reed shoots the ball anything close to how they did against South Tahoe, it has a legitimate shot to upset the Hawks, who finished the Sierra Division season undefeated.
The Raiders shot 47 percent (14 of 30) from the field in the first half (14 of 30) and 44 percent (7 of 16) from behind the 3-point line against the Vikings.
South Tahoe (15-12) led 3-0 after Joel Keegan’s free throw at the 7:01 mark of the first quarter, then saw Reed go on a 22-0 run over the next five minutes. During the run, the Raiders scored 20 points in a three-minute span.
The Vikings didn’t help themselves with their 10 turnovers in the opening quarter. But Vince Capellino finally stopped the bleeding when his 3-pointer from the corner made it 22-7 going into the second quarter.
Then the Jared Wood show started. The senior forward scored 10 of his game-high 27 points in the first 3 1/2 minutes of the second quarter and the Vikings only trailed 29-20 with 4:27 left before halftime.
At that point, things couldn’t have appeared any brighter for the Vikings.
They were in the double-bonus with 6 minutes left before halftime and the nerves of playing in their first playoff game in six seasons seemed to be calmed.
But that brightness dimmed over the next four minutes as the Raiders went on a 17-2 to end the half and led 46-22 at the break.
Reed had two players in double figures (Brian Petersen 13 points, Kyle Walter 11 points), while Wood led South Tahoe with 14 in the opening half.
The Vikings’ 17 first-half turnovers totaled more than their field goal attempts (16).
“When a team goes on runs like that, it’s very difficult to overcome,” STHS coach Derek Allister said. “They just played very well tonight, and we knew they were capable of that. Their pressure really got to us.”
After Wood knocked down two 3-pointers and K.J. Allister a trey of his own to start the second half, South Tahoe looked poised to start another run.
The Raiders, though, countered by making six of their first eight shots of the half and opening up their biggest lead of the game, 55-28, with 5:36 left in the third.
Keegan, who was held to one point in the first half, scored nine of his 10 points at the end of the third quarter as South Tahoe went into the fourth quarter trailing 63-45.
Reed never allowed the Vikings to get any closer, outscoring them 14-6 in the final quarter despite resorting to stalling the final 5 minutes of the game.
Petersen finished with 17 points for the Raiders, who also got 15 points from Walters and 13 from Nick Dixon. Reed shot 48 percent from the field and 46 percent from three-point range.
“We played well at the start of the second half, but we just couldn’t stop them,” coach Allister said. “I feel bad for the kids, but this in no way diminishes what they did this season. Nobody expected them to get here after last season.
“To be honest, coaching this group of kids is the most fun I’ve had coaching in the last 11, 12 years.”
STHS shot the ball well, going 29 of 42 (45 percent) from the field, but committed 24 turnovers and compared with Reed’s 11. However, eight of the Raiders’ 11 turnovers came after they held a 20-point lead in the second half.
Hug 73, McQueen 68
Galena 68, North Valleys 59
Reno 73, Elko 48
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