By Tylar Laity 

White Pine girls basketball coach

The White Pine High girls basketball team had another successful road trip last weekend heading to Pershing and Battle Mountain, winning both games and putting themselves in position to play for first place and the league title.

Michayla Cessford said, “The past three games all were super tough road matchups with good teams all fighting for playoff spots and to come out of all three with wins feels great, now we just need to finish off a few more this week”

The tough road trip started off with an early morning and getting right off the bus to play. Because Pershing was hosting the Northern wrestling divisional tournament, the game times were moved up and Lovelock utilized an auxiliary gym to play the junior varsity games at the same time as varsity.

The first quarter was very close and back and forth with a score favoring Pershing County, 7-6. In the second quarter the Cats looked a little more calm and ready to play their game, scoring a few quick baskets and then turning around to play some tough defense. A quick shot and putback by the Mustangs right as the quarter ended left White Pine down 15-14 going into half.

“Coming out of the lockerroom we made a few defensive adjustments and it helped our offense to spark.” said Britney Kingston.

The Ladycats would finish the game off with a couple of great steals out of the press and then some clutch baskets including two big three-point shots from Hailey Andre to win 45-38.

Andre expressed her excitement saying “This win felt so good, we knew we could beat them in our past two games we just could not put a full game together.”

On Saturday the Cats would play at Battle Mountain, an opponent they had beaten twice previously but did not want to overlook. Once again the tough defense stepped up and helped get the offense to gel. White Pine entered the second quarter up 12-5 and then kept up the good play in the second to enter the half up 26-11. In the second half the Longhorns would put on a full court press that got a few turnovers but the Ladycats worked through it and eventually opened the game up at the end of the third quarter 38-18. In the last quarter the Cats would slow things down and hold on to the ball to finish out the game with a 47-26 win putting them just one game behind West Wendover, but later that evening Incline was able to beat the Wolverines in their own gym putting WP in first place.

Statistically the girls have the best defense in the league allowing 413 points so far in league play and playing all but one of their league games, while the next closest is West Wendover allowing 454 in one less game then WP. Last weekend the Cats were offensively  lead again by Madison Rick with15 and 12 points in the two games and she added her 5th double-double in league play with 10 rebounds Saturday. Many other girls helped chip in points here and there but other leading scorers this weekend were Mikinley Prengel with 6 and 9, Britney Kingston with 8 and 6 and Lily Fullmer with 4 and 9.

This week the Ladycats(17-6) have three games starting with a couple of road games in Alamo (14-7) and West Wendover (16-3) then finish the regular season at home on Saturday against non conference Tonopah (5-7) for the senior recognition game. Coach Tylar Laity noted “Two non-conference games in the last week makes things interesting, especially with our last league game in between, that game is a big one because if we can win it then we finish the season going into divisions as the number one seed.” This is something White Pine has not done in over 10 years, although they did win the division and state tournament the past two years they entered divisions as the 2 and 3 seed.

The divisional tournament will take place February 17th and 18th in Winnemucca at Lowry High School.