Vikings need help to make playoffs
Eighteen years of history is at stake this weekend.
The South Tahoe High boys basketball team has advanced to the zone playoffs every year since it began competing in Northern Nevada in 1982-83.
Friday, the Vikings not only have to beat the Carson Senators in their house, but also need the Reno Huskies to defeat the Hug Hawks.
None of which seems to bother head coach Derek Allister.
“To be honest that’s not a streak that I’m all that worried about,” the first-year coach said. “I haven’t been here for 18 years. I would just like to see the kids rewarded for all their hard work.”
The Vikings are one game behind Hug for the final spot in the playoffs. But with the quality of the Vikings’ league wins, Allister feels his team has a chance to slip into the tournament if the two schools finished tied.
South Tahoe has wins over Hug, Wooster and Douglas, while the Hawks have victories over the Vikings, Wooster (twice), and Douglas.
“The fact that we beat Wooster, Hug, Douglas, and then (assuming we beat) Carson, should be enough to put us in,” Allister said.
Friday’s game will be no easy task, however, as the Senators are sitting in second place and handed the Vikings a 69-63 defeat earlier in the season. The Vikings have performed better on the road during the season than they have at home. Of their three league wins, two have been on the road, against Douglas and Wooster.
“I’m glad that we are on the road,” Allister said. “We can just go out there and play without all the other distractions that go along with a home game.”
Distractions or not, this team has the chance to overcome some great adversities should it earn a spot in the postseason.
This year’s Vikings not only featured many players who hadn’t played in previous seasons, but went through a coaching change and didn’t have camps or trips during the summers as they have in the past.
“So many things are different this year, that you really can’t compare this team to ones in the past,” Allister said. “These kids didn’t have all the practice time, had to adjust to a new system and everything else that goes along with that.
“But it finally feels like we’re playing like a team. We can go out there and compete. As long as we’re in position to win down the stretch, we’ll be OK.”
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Athletes from across the globe will make their way into the National Stadium in Beijing, China, next month for the opening ceremonies of the Winter Olympics.