The Ely Times

Picture two boxers. They feel each other out the first few rounds, one 

has a bit of an advantage, but neither scoring too many points. Then one has a big round, pummels the other furiously, but no knockout. In the next round the other boxer responds in kind. So at the end the decision is close.

So it was in the meeting between league leading White Pine and Incline Jan. 25 at Incline.

In a low scoring first half, the Highlanders led 14-7. In the third quarter though, Incline overwhelms the Ladycats 14-4 to take a 28-11 lead. But in the fourth quarter, White Pine roars back 22-9, yet the Highlanders hold on for a 37-33 win.

The teams split their league series this season and it breaks a six-game win streak White Pine had against Incline.

Coach Justin Locke could not attend the weekend games and assistant Mele Kingston handled the team. She said, “Offensively and defensively our girls were just sluggish, we really struggled with that. Incline was playing zone against us and stopping us from going to the basket, forcing us to try to shoot from the perimeter and we were not doing it well, so we’d just drive in and lose the ball or face someone taller to shoot over.”    

Meanwhile, White Pine was making it equally hard for Incline, but the Highlanders did have a 28-11 lead going into the final period.

Then the Ladycats really started clawing at the lead, using the right and left boxing combinations, outscoring Incline 22-9. “We threw on a full-court press,” Kingston said, “should have done that earlier. We pulled within three points at the end, but they made the foul shots to keep us at arm’s length.”

Both teams still have to play third place Yerington again.

At North Tahoe on Saturday, White Pine jumped out to a 26-9 halftime lead and didn’t have to be concerned thereafter.

Individual stats were not posted for either game.

This weekend the Ladycats play their final home games hosting  Pershing County and Coral Academy Friday and Saturday. They conclude the regular season Feb. 8-9 at Yerington and Silver Stage and a non-league game at Pahranagat Valley Feb. 14.

The six-team 2A Northern regional playoffs are scheduled for Feb. 21-23 at Sparks High School. The top two finalists advance to the state tournament March 1-2 at The Orleans in Las Vegas.

As the month of February begins, the leaders state wide in the girls 2A ranks are White Pine (18-2), Incline (16-2), Needles (18-4), Calvary Chapel (15-5) and Battle Mountain (15-6).