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Truckee potential shines through in second half

BAY KELLEY, Sierra Sun

A bleak first half performance against the Fernley Vacqueros, the Tahoe-Truckee Wolverines’ girls’ varsity basketball team showed its true potential.

After falling behind 31-13 in the first half against the undefeated Fernley team, Truckee nearly closed the gap in the second half, pulling to within seven points midway through the fourth quarter. While the Wolverines lost the game, 55-42, their coach, Mike Merriman, was pleased with the effort.

“It was the hardest I’ve seen them play all year,” Merriman said. “What I mean is that the intensity was the most that I’ve seen this season. I hope that they now realize how hard they have to play to stay at the level.”

Despite three triples by the Vacqueros in the first quarter – two by Kim Dunn and one by Natalia Gonzales – the Wolverines stayed relatively close, trailing 16-9 heading into the second quarter.

It was in the second quarter that the Truckee team was outscored 15-4. The Wolverines gave up a host of turnovers and were unable to convert points even on open shots. Truckee had 16 turnovers in the first half and converted only five of 21 two point attempts.

“I told them that we were being embarrassed out there,” said Merriman regarding his halftime speech. “I told them ‘we’ve got to hustle and we’ve got to rebound.’ You can’t go out there and play like that again.”

The Wolverines came out in the second half a changed team.

Heather Shove hit a deuce to begin the second half. From there, she, Erin DeMont and Lauren Gordon controlled the game. DeMont found her zone just to the right of the basket and managed to score several times with a quick five-foot shot. Shove took control of the inside and began scoring from the post. Gordon, who was Truckee’s only effective player in the first half (with eight points) continued to play a steady game.

DeMont and Shove also were controlling the inside defensively. The two combined for several blocked shots, forcing the Vacqueros’ game to the outside.

With 2:16 remaining in the game, the Wolverines had narrowed the Vacqueros’ lead to 48-41, but were unable to keep up the pressure. Truckee only scored one point in the closing minutes.

Dunn and Gonzales were the game’s leading scorers, accounting for 17 and 18 points, respectively.

Gordon finished the game with 14 points. DeMont had 12 points, 10 of which occurred in the second half. Shove had 12 points (11 in the second half) and 13 rebounds in the game.

The Wolverines shot 50 percent from the field in the second half.


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