Truckee out-gunned at home
The Yerington Lions started the game looking sharp in Truckee’s house Friday night. Nothing changed throughout the contest, and the visiting team cruised to a 71-53 win.
“They just came to play,” said Cory Hoehn, a junior post player who finished with 14 points and 11 rebounds. “They just hit every shot they took.”
Well, not every shot, but a lot more than Truckee.
The Wolverines pulled even with the Lions at eight points early in the first quarter. But while battling for possession of the ball under the bucket, Hoehn was called for a technical foul when he ripped the ball away from a Yerington player, flinging him to the floor on the takeaway.
That would be the last time the game was tied as the Lions went on to score eight unanswered points, then another 13 before senior guard Brandon Peterson ended the run with a basket. By that time the score was 29-12, then 31-12 after Yerington answered right back.
“They get down a few points and they feel they have to make that up in one play,” Truckee head coach Keith Crawford said of his players. “They dig themselves a hole.”
Trailing by 17 points in the second quarter, the Wolverines received a spark off the bench from senior post player Alfredo Oropeza, who hit a shot under the bucket and was fouled, and junior guard Drew Stewart, who scored on three consecutive shots to bring the score to 31-21.
Coming off the half, the Wolverines made efforts to get the ball into the hands of Hoehn. Truckee’s big man came through, scoring nine points in the paint over a short span to bring his team back to within nine points.
Then Yerington hit a three-point shot on the other end, then another, and another, plus the foul. And just like that, the Lions’ lead ballooned back to 19 points, 56-37, on the 10-0 run.
Truckee, seeming to forget about the easy points that came off feeds to Hoehn down low, began firing outside shots. Despite getting good looks on most attempts, more shots than not clanked off the rim.
Energy off the bench from Stewart, Kyle Rinella, Gavin Novotny and Kyle Steverman provided a little boost early in the fourth quarter as the Wolverines tried to make up some ground. But it was not enough.
Near the end of the game, before Yerington fans began loudly chanting, “It’s all over,” junior post player Forrest Krull shoved a Yerington player to the ground, resulting in a prompt ejection. The Wolverines were noticeably frustrated.
“We underestimated them,” senior guard Jason Chapman said of the Lions.
With six games remaining, the Wolverines must win out to guarantee a playoff spot.
“It’s feasible,” Hoehn said, “we just have to take it one game at a time.”