Truckee boys eke one out over Fernley
The last time Truckee and Fernley met, extra minutes were needed for resolution. Wednesday night’s rematch was no different.
After 13 lead changes and five ties in the second half alone, the Truckee High boys basketball team escaped with a 74-69 overtime win over the visiting Vaqueros.
“I’m sick of overtime,” said Truckee senior Cody Wicks, who scored a team-high 23 points. “It’s been too close.”
The same could be said for both squads, as Truckee (5-5 Northern 3A) has played into overtime four times and Fernley (2-8) three. The Wolverines are 3-1 in those overtime battles while the Vaqueros fell to 0-3.
“In my mind this was a must-win game to make playoffs,” said Truckee coach Steve Ames, whose team moved into fifth place in the competitive Northern 3A, half a game in front of Lowry (4-5).
Yerington sits atop the league standings at 7-2, followed by Incline (7-3), Dayton (6-3) and Sparks (5-4). With four league games remaining, Truckee needs just one more win to lock up the sixth and final playoff spot.
Coming off consecutive wins, one against Dayton this past Saturday, Ames likes the Wolverines’ chances.
“We’re playing well,” he said. “I talked to the kids about peaking at the right time. The best teams peak at the end of the season, and I think they’re working hard to do that and achieve their goal.”
The effort was there Wednesday, as Truckee combined hustle and team play ” as well as its quickness and athleticism ” to force timely turnovers and earn quality shots on the offensive end.
“We were just moving the ball around and being patient,” said Nick Tennant, a senior post player who contributed 12 points, including a pair of crucial free throws to make it a two-possession game with 14 seconds left in overtime. “I think we did a pretty good job of passing the ball around and getting good, high-percentage shots.”
Truckee junior Ryan Roberts also stepped up his game in crunch time, scoring 10 of his 17 points in the fourth quarter, including two 3-pointers. Senior Pat Galvin chipped in 16 points, nine of which came on 3-point shots.
For the Vaqueros, Joe Crabtree almost single-handedly kept his team in the game, playing big in the paint and scoring 23 points ” 10 in the fourth quarter and overtime. Fernley’s Bryce Baker posted 15 points and Jacob Lehman 10.
A small but lively home crowd also gave the Wolverines a boost late in the contest, particularly after Roberts made a fancy behind-the-back move to gain control of the ball and convert a layup with a Fernley defender in his face ” this with a minute left in regulation to give Truckee a two-point lead. Once the building was rocking, the Wolverines seized the momentum and didn’t let go.
“They’re a pretty confident bunch,” Ames said. “They’ve been playing together so long they have confidence in each other and as a team.”
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