TRUCKEE — The Truckee girls could have used a day off after their hard-fought win at South Tahoe on Friday.
A day after defeating the rival Vikings in their league opener, 33-24, the Wolverines hung with Division I McQueen into the fourth quarter before the visiting Lancers pulled away for the 59-44 win.
“If I had made the schedule, I don’t think I would have scheduled McQueen back-to-back with South Tahoe,” said first-year Truckee coach Dave Shalvis. “It was a tough one down at South Tahoe, and then to have to get back at midnight and play the next day, they were tired.”
The Wolverines got off to a hot start against McQueen. They took an early lead on consecutive shots in the paint by 5-3 sophomore point guard Sydney Mock, who was unfazed by the Lancers’ tall post players towering above.
McQueen senior guard Christina Farman responded by knocking down one of her several 3-pointers in the game to knot the score early, and the teams proceeded to trade leads on five occasions before the half.
Truckee held its last lead at 23-22 late in the second quarter, after senior forward Andrea Bravo hit her second consecutive shot in the post. Farman then connected on another 3-point attempt en route to her game-high 21 points, and the Lancers never trailed again.
The Wolverines, who fell behind 29-25 by half, kept the score tight in the third quarter and into the fourth. They pulled to within three points, 33-30, midway through the third quarter on a slashing three-point play completed by senior guard Kaylee Neill.
But speedy McQueen guard Sadaria McAlister, who pestered Truckee ball-handlers all game, created a steal and converted the layup and followed with a driving bucket as the Lancers carried a 38-30 lead into the fourth quarter.
“I knew that if there was a turnover, she was already going to be standing under the basket,” Shalvis said of McAlister. “That’s how she plays. She has unreal quickness.”
Despite a strong final quarter by Neill, who scored on several aggressive dribble-drives on her way to a 14-point performance, McQueen proved too strong down the stretch.
Mock finished with 18 points to lead the Wolverines, while Lauren Peak had six and Bravo four.
In the low-scoring battle at South Tahoe the night before, Neill scored a team-high 14 points, Moch contributed 11 points and Peak had six.
Truckee is now 1-0 in league play and 1-1 overall.