North Tahoe basketball: Incline boys erase 13-point halftime deficit for win |

North Tahoe basketball: Incline boys erase 13-point halftime deficit for win

Jen Schmidt/Sierra SunNorth Tahoe's James Laughlin and Chris Cahill defend Incline's Patrick Howe during the second half of Tuesday's game at Incline. Incline came from behind to win 49-45.

INCLINE VILLAGE ” After a sluggish first quarter, North Tahoe began to gain control of its Tuesday game at Incline, building a 29-16 halftime lead.

But a mixture of poor free-throw shooting, poor defense and turnovers gave momentum to Incline, and the Highlanders came back to enjoy a 49-45 win in front of a loud Incline Snowcoming Week crowd.

“I’m disappointed in the way we played,” said North Tahoe coach Mike Williams. “We didn’t make free throws, we didn’t take care of the ball and Incline destroyed our press, which was terrible. Incline did a great job.”

Both teams struggled in the first quarter, which ended in a 7-7 tie. The Lakers (3-11 Northern 2A) got hot in the second frame, however, outscoring Incline 22-8, powered by 10 points from Armando Paniagua. Paniagua finished the game with 13 points.

Incline (10-4 league, 17-8 overall) came back in the third quarter and closed the gap to 35-27 entering the fourth. The Highlanders then went on a 9-1 run to start the fourth, with two 3-pointers from Patrick Howe and a 3-pointer from Jordan Wright to tie the game at 36.

Down the stretch, starters Patrick Murray, Johnathan Chang and Jason Hillman combined to score 11 of the last 13 points for Incline to seal the win.

Chris Cahill had nine points for North Tahoe, while James Laughlin and Andrew Auerbach each had seven points. Juan Medina (6), Oscar Appel (2) and Frankie Tenorio (1) also scored for the Lakers.

Incline’s win came one week after the Highlanders lost 79-45 at home to Silver State (ROP), when Incline fielded just six players following the suspension last week of eight varsity players.

The suspended players were on the bench Tuesday, and they watched the current varsity players (which include Murray, Chang and Hillman and the former eight-member junior varsity team) erase a 13-point halftime deficit en route to the win.

“I think a lot of credit goes to (JV coach) Micha (Corneil Sr.),” said Incline coach Dan Schreiber. “Its tough to make a transition like that mid-season, but (Corneil) coaches a good team, and tonight was a testament to that.”

The Lakers wrap up the regular season with back-to-back home games Friday and Saturday. North Tahoe hosts Silver Stage on Friday, with the girls tipping off at 6 p.m. and the boys at 7:30 p.m. On Saturday the Lakers host Mineral County. Girls are scheduled to tip off at 5 p.m. and the boys at 6:30 p.m.

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