North Tahoe boys, girls go undefeated at Whittell basketball tourney

The North Tahoe boys and girls’ basketball teams went undefeated last weekend at the Whittell Invitational Tournament.

The Lakers teams finished a combined 8-0 during three days of competition at Whittell High School against squads from around Nevada and California.

“It was an overall great weekend for our team and a very solid finish to our preseason. I am glad we have experienced some adversity in this preseason and I’m proud of the way the guys have responded and bounced back,” said North Tahoe boys’ head coach Devin Ginty in an email to the Sun. “They have been able to grind out some gritty wins, which is a testament to how hard they’ve worked in the offseason and prepared for this year. I think we are in a good spot heading into league play next week and look forward to how much better we can get as the year goes on because there is still a lot of room for growth.”

The Lakers opened tournament play on Thursday against Owyhee and captured a 52-38 win. Senior Lucas Valois led the team with 20 points, senior Cameron McAndrews added 11 points, and senior John Parmeter Zapata scored seven points.

North Tahoe then faced Smith Valley the following day and took another win by double digits, defeating the Bulldogs 49-27. Sophomore Juan Camacho-Morales led the Lakers with 10 points and five rebounds. McAndrews scored nine points. Valois had eight points and three steals, and Zapata finished with seven points.

The Lakers then played a doubleheader on Saturday and topped Silver Stage, 52-39, before taking a 52-51 win against North Valleys.

Camacho led they way against Silver Stage, scoring 18 points. Junior Patrick Gulini finished with eight points, four assists, and three steals. Valois added eight points and five assists.

The Class 2A Lakers then closed the tournament against Class 3A North Valleys. North Tahoe trailed by 10 points with a little under 4 minutes remaining, but McAndrews and Valois hit back-to-back 3-pointers to cut the lead. Then with roughly 90 seconds left, Zapata scored on a layup to pull North Tahoe to within a point. After North Valleys missed a shot with 20 seconds left, North Tahoe executed a play and found Zapata for the game-winning layup with 5 seconds left.

“That win showed a lot of maturity and growth; to be able to pull out a game, against a strong opponent, where we didn’t play our best, is a huge step forward and the charge was led by our captains,” said Ginty.

Zapata led the team against North Valleys, tallying 19 points, 20 rebounds, and five blocks. McAndrews scored 12 points, and Valois finished the game with 11 points.

“Everybody contributed this weekend and guys are starting to settle into their roles. We got some important wins over Silver Stage, a league opponent, and then North Valleys who is a very athletic 3A school,” added Ginty.

North Tahoe (7-2, 0-0 Northern League) will open league play this evening at Pershing County (1-8, 0-0 Northern League)

In girls’ basketball, the Lakers improved to 6-3 on the season after a 4-0 finish at the tournament in Whittell.

North Tahoe topped North Valleys 38-28 to open the tournament. The Lakers then took a 46-31 win against Lone Pine the following day. The team then played in a doubleheader on Saturday and beat Whittell, 38-23, before topping Bishop Union 32-29.

North Tahoe (6-3, 0-0 Northern League) will open league play this evening at Pershing County  (5-4, 0-0 Northern League).

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