Submitted photo
White Pine’s Kellen Wilkin goes up for a shot in a recent game.

The White Pine High boys basketball team couldn’t score well in the middle quarters of their league game with powerful Pershing County on Friday and ended up on the short end of a 69-44 score.

The Mustangs opened up with 18 points in both the first and second quarters, while the Bobcats were struggling just to keep up. Pershing County led at halftime 36-19.

Coach Tarrall Trask said, “We went cold in the second and third quarters. We played good in the fourth quarter. Up till then we had stopped running our offense and their guard (William McKinney Gattrell) got hot from outside. Kind of demoralizing in the fact that he can knock down a shot from anywhere. His deep three’s hurt us.

“Chris Piskovich stepped up for us though,” Trask said. “He was bringing an offensive spark that no one else seemed to be able to do.”

The third quarter was all Pershing County as they poured in 24 points to just nine for White Pine. After that, Pershing pulled their starters and just coasted on in. The Mustangs (15-2, 4-0) went on to also win 55-45 at West Wendover on Saturday.

The 2A Northern league is going to be tough, as Trask has already noted. .   Surprisingly, in the series between the two teams since 2005, the teams are now tied for the number of wins and loses, 7-7. Pershing County has won six of the last seven, but White Pine won six of seven meetings from 2005-2011.

Battle Mountain came to Ely on Saturday and Trask said the team played a lot better, but “we lost to them 59-50.”

The Bobcats held a 36-26 halftime lead. “The best I’ve seen the team start off a game and we had some fouls, a basket and one, that really hurt us,” said Trask.

Collin Young had a hot hand for the Bobcats with five three-pointers and 21 points overall.

“But we just seemed to stop running our offense the last quarter and a half and let them back into it,” Trask said. “We reverted back to some old ways and didn’t take good care of the ball. We only scored 14 points in the second half. We played with good intensity, but it all goes back to just not running our offense that we practice.  When the game got tight, everyone got a little anxious and kind of forgot what we were doing.”

This week on Tuesday, the Bobcats (4-8, 1-4) began a five-game home stand, but suffered their third loss in a row with a close 60-57 loss to West Wendover.  Today and Saturday, the Cats host North Tahoe and Incline, and Jan. 20-21 host Yerington and Silver Stage.