Incline basketball: Girls secure top seed in regional tournament
Final Northern DIII standings
1. Incline 10-2
2. West Wendover 8-4
3. Yerington 7-5
4. Battle Mountain 7-5
5. Pershing County 7-5
6. Silver Stage 3-9
7. North Tahoe 0-12
Regional semifinal matchups
(2) West Wendover vs. (3) Yerington, 3 p.m.
(1) Incline vs. (4) Battle Mountain, 6:20 p.m.
Incline’s girls left little doubt that they are the team to beat in the Northern Division III regional championships in West Wendover this Friday and Saturday.
The Highlanders will enter the four-team tournament as the top seed after posting a 10-2 league record — with the only two blemishes coming on a road trip without their standout senior, Kira Porter.
One of those two losses came against fourth-seeded Battle Mountain (7-5), however, which Incline will face in the semifinal round Friday for a chance at redemption.
The winner qualifies for the state championship tournament and will play for the top Northern seed in Saturday’s regional final against second-seeded West Wendover (8-4) or third-seeded Yerington (7-5). The state tournament will be held Feb. 26-27 at University of Nevada, Reno’s Lawlor Events Center — where the Incline girls won the state title in 2014.
Incline ended the regular season on a high note, defeating Yerington 41-35 on the road last Wednesday and routing visiting ROP 60-25 on Saturday.
Porter led the way against the Lions with 16 points, 10 rebounds and five blocks. Taylor Redfern added nine points, four blocks and four steals, Harmony Bates had seven points, and Briana Barraza had six steals.
In two regular-season meetings with Battle Mountain, Incline won 40-27 at home on Dec. 19 and lost 51-33 on the road on Jan. 23. The Highlanders did not have Porter in the second meeting, however, as the senior forward sat out the road trip with an injury.
Incline’s only other league loss came on the same trip against West Wendover, which took advantage of Porter’s absence to earn a 63-48 victory.
As for the Southern Division III regional, top-seeded Lincoln County will face fourth-seeded Agassi Prep, and second-seeded White Pine will face third-seeded Needles in the other semifinal. Like the Northern regional, the top two teams advance to state. Find regional playoff brackets at http://www.niaa.com.