Vikings regain Division II lead |

Vikings regain Division II lead

When the South Tahoe boys basketball team hosted Wooster on Jan. 15, the game was settled by two points, as the Colts handed the Vikings their only league setback of the season at home in a 69-67 defeat. Ten days later, it’s a mere two percentage points that separates the South Tahoe and Wooster teams in the Northern Nevada 4A Division I standings.

The Vikings (16-5, 6-1 in division) reclaimed the top spot this weekend, dropping Fallon and Hug in a pair of weekend tilts. Meanwhile, Wooster (11-8, 5-1) relinquished the top spot in the division, falling to Carson Friday evening and yielding to Elko in a non-league game the next day.

“Coach told us he had a feeling Wooster would slip up, and they did,” said guard Josh David, who slightly aggravated his shoulder going up for a layup against Hug. “We were able to capitalize on their loss with a win Saturday.”

The Vikings used a balance attack to foil the Hawks in a 67-51 victory Saturday, as Matt Williams (12 points), John Giannoni III (17 points) and David (13 points) all scored in double figures. South Tahoe led 32-24 at halftime and took a 10-point lead into the final quarter. The Hawks fell to 0-8 in division play with the loss.

In Friday’s game, the Vikings used an explosive 21-7 third quarter run to wear out Fallon in a 58-39 win. David and guard Tim Sprinkles did much of the damage, combining for 29 points against the Greenwave.

Being back in first is nice, but only if you stay there, said Vikings coach Tom Orlich.

“It’s not going to mean anything until we beat Wooster at Wooster,” said Orlich , who was pleased with his bench play against Hug and Fallon. “If we can’t do that, even if we’re tied, they’ll win the tiebreaker because of head-to-head (games).”

South Tahoe will host Douglas on Tuesday. The Tigers feature a rejuvenated offense and have won their last four contests since falling to the Vikes Jan. 8. The Vikings will then have a full week to prepare for a Feb. 2 road rematch against the Colts, in what should be one of their most important games of the year.

“Every game is the game of the year at this point,” David said. “If we lose any other games, the Wooster game won’t really mean anything. I think everyone is realizing that and we’re trying to step up our play.”

Viking girls still in search of division win

The South Tahoe girls basketball continued its season-long struggle, yielding to Fallon and Hug to fall 4-16 overall and winless in division play.

The Vikings kept it close until the third quarter in a 64-53 loss Friday to the Greenwave, but Fallon’s Monica Meihack scored 13 of her 17 points in the third to put away South Tahoe for good.

Saturday’s game didn’t get much better as the Vikings fell to Hug by a 62-46 deficit. Forward Casey Hydrick led South Tahoe with 12 points. The Vikes will continue their search for their first division win as they take on Douglas at home on Tuesday.

Ross shines in Elko

The South Tahoe wrestling team traveled halfway across the state of Nevada, leaving Friday afternoon for a Saturday meet in Elko. The wide geographical expanse between the two schools paralleled the difference between their teams as older, more experienced Nevada teams dominated a maturing Vikings squad.

South Tahoe lost all three matches against McQueen (72-21), Galena (72-24) and Elko (78-0) as Coach Tom Barnes accompanied just Viking eight wrestlers on a seven-hour trip.

Sophomore captain Cavin Ross, competing in an unfamiliar 103-pound weight class, gave South Tahoe one of its few bright spots of the day, picking up a 7-6 decision over McQueen’s Scott Bartolomeo in the team’s lone match win. Ross narrowly missed victories in his two other matches, losing a Galena grappler on a third-period pin and falling to an Elko wrestler in a 7-5 overtime decision.

“Ross is probably our strongest prospect for the state wrestling tournament,” Barnes said. “I think he has a good opportunity to get through the zone tournament.”

South Tahoe will host Sparks and Reno at a dual meet Wednesday afternoon.

Whittell High girls basketball team wasn’t thinking upset when five-time defending state champion Hawthorne came to Zephyr Cove on Friday night. Instead, the Warriors focused on limiting their number of mistakes.

As expected, Hawthorne ran away with a 73-27 victory, but the Warriors were content with their 27 turnovers.

“We were able to control the ball a little bit better and against much lesser opponents we’ve had more turnovers,” said Whittell coach Lindsay Wines. “They didn’t roll over and die. They played hard the entire game.”

Serpents star Ashlee Orndorff scored 10 of her game-high 24 points in the first quarter.

“We talked about double teaming her, but she is such a dominant player. She has improved tremendously since last year, and we had to focus our offense around her,” Wines said.

Aurora Terry led Whittell with 11 points and Caitlin Fagan eight. Venessa Brewer pulled down seven rebounds. Sara Sufka was limited to three points, but Wines said her all-around play was noteworthy. Sufka had six rebounds and only four turnovers.

Whittell, 0-5 in division play and 5-13 overall, is tentatively scheduled to play at Lovelock on Wednesday. The Warriors nondivision game with Truckee on Saturday was postponed. No makeup date has been set.

For 30 minutes Friday night, Whittell High demonstrated why it can play with the best teams in the Nevada 3A Division. But in the final two minutes, turnovers and missed free throws showed why in a preseason poll division coaches picked the Warriors last.

Hawthorne escaped Zephyr Cove with a 56-53 victory only when Todd Echan’s baseline three-point attempt was too long with two seconds remaining.

Whittell, 1-4 in Division II and 6-11 overall, led by as many as 12 points in the first half before settling for a 31-24 lead at intermission.

“It’s one of the toughest losses I’ve had here in four years. They played hard enough to win, but they just didn’t execute in a few key situations,” said Whittell coach Steve Maltase.

Maltase said the Serpents, 5-1 in division, rallied because of their second-chance points and free-throw conversions.

Dusty Apocotos topped Whittell with 20 points, while James Putnam tossed in 17.

Whittell travels to Lovelock on Tuesday.

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