North Tahoe basketball: Girls get tune-up before zones; Boys pull off upset win
TAHOE CITY ” Two Laker girls reached scoring milestones as North Tahoe swept its final two regular-season games this past weekend.
Senior point guard Kelly Hester scored her 800th varsity point and senior Sydney Courcier scored her 600th point during the Lakers’ 59-40 win over Mineral County on Saturday.
“It’s a tribute to the kids working hard on their offensive game,” said North Tahoe head coach Scott Conn, whose team routed Silver Stage 50-20 the previous day. “As part-time starters as sophomores and full-time starters as juniors and seniors, that’s an awful lot of points scored for a high school player. …
“Personally, I think it’s a tremendous accomplishment.”
At 9-3 in league play, the Lakers will enter the Northern 2A Regional Tournament as the No. 2 seed behind top-seeded Incline (11-1). Both teams have first-round byes.
North Tahoe plays the winner of today’s quarterfinal between Pershing County and Silver Stage on Friday, and Incline plays the winner of the other quarterfinal between Battle Mountain and Whittell. Friday’s semifinals will be held at North Valleys High School, with the winners playing for the Northern 2A title at Wooster High School on Saturday at noon.
The champ and runner-up move on to the 2A State Championship in Las Vegas on Feb. 27-28.
“I’m feeling very positive about (the postseason),” Conn said. “We’re doing a lot of things offensively that we were not doing earlier, and defensively we’ve stepped up our game as well. …
“We’re truly looking forward to whoever we play Friday. Regardless of who we play, we’re going to play our game and hope it turns out in our favor.”
Conn said the Lakers are entering the regional tournament with “a healthy respect” for whichever team they play, as last season they suffered a disappointing loss to Pershing County in their opener.
This past Saturday when Hester and Courcier recorded their 800th and 600th points, respectively, against Mineral County, Shannon Stack and Shelby Adams had monster games under the bucket. Stack finished with a game-high 23 points and 22 rebounds, and Adams pulled down 23 rebounds. Hester had 14 points and five assists in the game, and Courcier added 10 points. Sara Estrada had four steals.
Adams and Stack also led the way against Silver Stage, finishing with 13 points and 17 rebounds apiece, while Courcier had 12 points and Hester seven assists and three blocks.
The Laker boys upset first-place Silver Stage 65-63 on Friday and lost 56-38 to Mineral County on Saturday.
North Tahoe coach Mike Williams said Friday’s shocker was the highlight of the season for the Lakers, who finished with a 4-12 record in the Northern 2A.
“Everyone went crazy,” Williams said of the win. “That kind of made the season. We played like I thought we were capable of playing. We made enough free throws and open shots. It was awesome.”
The coach said the loss to Hawthorne was a let-down after Friday’s performance. But even if the Lakers had won, they would not have earned a playoff berth.
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As seniors from North Tahoe collected diplomas this week, a group of Lakers continued another local tradition — capturing first place at the boys’ regional golf championship.