Truckee girls come up short in league title game, set for first state appearance since 2010
For the first time since 2010, the Truckee girls’ basketball team is headed to the state tournament.
The Wolverines last week eliminated Lowry in the semifinals of the Class 3A Northern League tournament, taking a 54-41 victory at Churchill County High School to advance into the league championship game. Truckee’s win also earned the team a berth into this week’s four-team state tournament.
“Our team is going to go down in Truckee history,” said senior team captain Emily Monson. “It’s awesome. It’s been a really good season.”
Truckee entered the regional tournament as the No. 2 seed, while No. 3 seed Lowry reached the semifinals by topping Churchill County, 61-40, in the postseason opener.
In the semifinal matchup, the Wolverines built an eight-point lead in the first quarter behind a combined four 3-pointers from senior Elena Friedman and sophomore Ryan Flynn. Truckee’s defense then locked down Lowry in the second quarter, limiting the Buckaroos to four points to take a 34-15 lead into halftime.
Coming out of the locker room, Tanner scored an early basket for Truckee, but from there, the team went cold as Lowry outscored the Wolverines 13-3 in the quarter to get back into the game.
Truckee responded by going on an 8-0 run to open the fourth quarter, putting the game out of reach.
“We realized what was happening and we picked it back up in the fourth quarter,” said Monson, who scored 10 points.
Junior Annika Thayer tied for a team-high 11 points, which included a trio of baskets in the fourth quarter.
Junior captain Lauren Tanner also scored 11 points for Truckee. Tanner has been on varsity since her freshman year, and said this year’s team has stood apart from the previous two she’s played on.
“This is definitely the closest team we’ve had since I’ve been here. I think that’s made a really big impact on how we are playing,” she said. “All of us have our individual talents and it’s how we put them together — that’s what’s making us have success this season.”
Flynn also finished in double digits with 10 points. Friedman added nine and junior Emma Cooley scored three points.
The Wolverines then faced top-seeded Fernley on Saturday for the Northern League title, and came up short in tight contest, falling 50-47.
The Vaqueros came into the game undefeated in league play, but trailed 30-26 at halftime. Fernley outscored Truckee by five in the third quarter to take a 46-45 lead into the final 8 minutes of the game.
Both teams would struggle offensively in the fourth quarter as Fernley managed to hold on for a 50-47 victory to claim this year’s league title.
Truckee (20-6, 14-4 Northern League) will enter the four-team Class 3A state tournament as the No. 2 seed out of the Northern League, and will face Southern League champions Moapa Valley (22-6, 10-2 Southern — Sunrise League).
Truckee and Moapa Valley will face off at 3:30 p.m. Thursday at Reno High School. The winner of the game will take on the winner of Fernley and Pahrump Valley for the state championship, which will be contested the following day at Lawlor Events Center in Reno.
Justin Scacco is a reporter for the Sierra Sun. Contact him at email@example.com or 530-550-2643.
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