South Tahoe boys b-ball downs Truckee 62-45 in league debut |

South Tahoe boys b-ball downs Truckee 62-45 in league debut

Sylas Wright
South Tahoe forward Stone Merkley shields the ball from Truckee guard Nick Oberitter in the Vikings’ 62-45 win over the Wolverines on Tuesday night.
Sylas Wright / Sierra Sun |

TRUCKEE, Calif. — About three minutes after tipoff, the Wolverines were in trouble. The visiting South Tahoe boys basketball team used its size advantage and quickness to dominate the first half of Tuesday’s league opener and cruise to a 62-45 win.

“That loss was especially painful,” Truckee head coach Sky Nelson said. “The game was basically lost in the first and second quarters. They flat took it to us.”

From the start, South Tahoe (3-2, 1-0 I-A Northern) employed a smothering full-court man-to-man press that made life difficult for the Wolverines. While Truckee (1-4, 0-1) struggled to get the ball up court — much less find a quality shot — the Vikings scored the first nine points of the game and outscored the hosts 13-4 in the first quarter.

“We played the press OK,” South Tahoe head coach Joby Cefalu said. “We try to switch things up. Tonight we were jumping the ball well.”

The Vikings maintained their high level of intensity in the second quarter. South Tahoe opened the frame with a three-pointer from junior guard Denzel Perez and, after a fast-break layup by Truckee senior guard Nick Oberriter, went on an 8-1 run to extend their lead to 25-7.

“We had a lot of guys not doing their jobs,” Nelson said. “When you get guys out of position, it makes everyone else look out of position too.”

The Wolverines did not help their cause at the free throw line, as they made only three of their eight attempts in the second quarter and were 8-of-17 in the game. South Tahoe finished 14-of-19 from the line.

After entering the break trailing 29-13, Truckee managed to break South Tahoe’s press with more ease in the second half, resulting in numerous fast-break opportunities. But the Wolverines could not get the stops they needed on the defensive end, and the Vikings carried a cozy 47-27 lead into the fourth quarter.

With the outcome already determined, Truckee outscored South Tahoe 17-15 in the fourth.

“I thought we were a little sloppy, actually. We let them get a lot of easy layups,” Cefalu said. “We’re still trying to find ourselves. But getting that first league win is a nice thing.”

South Tahoe senior forward Tyler Hogbin controlled the post and finished with a game-high 15 points. Perez added 13 points for the Vikings, including three three-pointers, and sophomore guard Harry Moses-Chakmakis scored 11 — senior forward Stone Merkley had seven and senior guard Kirby David finished with five.

Oberriter led the Wolverines with 13 points. Senior guard Chase Vankirk contributed 10 points and senior forward Ryan Schildge added had nine.

South Tahoe returns to action Friday night at Lowry — during winter break, the Vikings will play in the San Pedro Pirate Shootout Dec. 26-30 in San Pedro, Calif. STHS and Truckee meet again Jan. 24.

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