Wolverines win Truckee Classic, North Tahoe splits pair of tourney games

The annual Truckee Classic boys’ basketball tournament was held last week, and while stormy weather altered the tournament’s format, Truckee and North Tahoe each managed to get quality early season minutes ahead of the teams’ respective league openers next week.

After losing a day of games and having two teams drop out due to last week’s storms, the six-team Truckee Classic got underway with the first round of games last Friday.

The Wolverines and Lakers each picked up wins to start the tournament. Truckee defeated the Douglas B Team 62-33, while North Tahoe cruised past league foe Coral Academy of Science — Reno, 45-33, in a non-league contest.

Lakers junior Cameron McAndrews led North Tahoe with 12 points and three assists, followed by junior John Zapata with nine points and eight rebounds, and junior Lucas Valois with nine points and five steals.

“The game was back and forth and not exactly pretty, but I’m glad we were able to pull out the win,” said North Tahoe Head Coach Devin Ginty in an email to the Sun.

“Everybody contributed and any chance we have to get a win against a future league opponent is a good thing.”

Ginty highlighted the play of Corey Joslin, who “gave us some great minutes off the bench,” and also Ben Trujillo, and Cooper Kohnen for providing a spark late in the game.

The Wolverines would face Coral Academy of Science — Reno in the other game and captured a 65-37 victory, according to Head Coach Sky Nelson, to win this year’s Truckee Classic as the only team to finish with an undefeated record.

The Lakers faced Douglas in the second game and suffered a 51-43 loss in overtime.

“We had a really rough start, and our low energy resulted in too many careless turnovers and easy baskets for Douglas,” said Ginty. “After being down 18, I’m really proud of the way our guys chipped away to battle back. Our execution in the fourth quarter allowed us to tie it and even have a chance to win in regulation.”

Lakers seniors, Liam Bickett-Walsh and Ricky Martinez, fouled out in overtime after solid performances for the team.

“Losing two senior leaders in our first overtime game of the season is tough and unfortunately we were unable to pull it out, but this is a great learning experience for our team,” said Ginty. “This tournament has shown us the high potential we have, but has also exposed a lot of things we need to clean up and get better at in order to reach that potential.”

Zapata led North Tahoe with 13 points, 13 rebounds, and five blocks. Bickett-Walsh added 10 points and nine rebounds, and Valois scored eight points. Ginty highlighted the effort of Martinez on the defensive side of the ball.

North Tahoe (2-1) will host Portola on Tuesday, before traveling to play in the Whittell Tournament this weekend.

Truckee (3-0) is off to a solid start, and will be tested in the team’s Class 3A Northern League opener next Tuesday on the road at Churchill County.

The Wolverines will also host a fundraiser this weekend at Truckee High School. The boys and girls’ teams will have a shoot-a-thon with proceeds going toward the programs. To sign up or sponsor a player, contact Truckee High School at (530) 582-2600.

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