Robert Perea, The Fernley Reporter
After each prevailed in an epic battle last weekend, both the Fernley High School boys and girls basketball teams will look to complete the season unbeaten in league play when they host Dayton Saturday afternoon.
The boys team pulled out a double-overtime win in Fallon last Friday night, then held off a Lowry comeback Saturday afternoon. The girls team took the best shot from defending state champion Lowry on Saturday, after rolling past Fallon Friday night.
The girls will host Dayton at 1 p.m. Saturday, followed by the boys at 2:30 p.m.
Both teams have already clinched the No. 1 seed for next week’s Northern 3A Region Tournament, and both went undefeated in crossover play against the West. Each will finish undefeated in league play with a win on Saturday.
The Vaqueros overcame a four-point deficit in the second overtime to pull out a 79-78 win over the Greenwave. The Vaqueros trailed 77-73 early in the second overtime, but after getting within two, they hit a pair of free throws with 1:24 left to tie the game. After a Fallon turnover, Jett Caudle drove into the lane and hit a floater from the free throw line to put Fernley up 79-77. The Vaqueros had a chance to ice the game, but missed two free throws, giving Fallon one last chance, but with 2.6 seconds left, Fallon hit just one of two free throws.
The Vaqueros overcame the losses of starters Johnnie Williams, Jake Cummings and Anthony Winters, who each fouled out. Fallon played the end of the second overtime without a point guard after Brady Alves and Braeden Sorensen fouled out.
“Sheldon Jacobson was fantastic in the overtime period as was Hayden McGinnis,” coach Cade Knutson said. “I was really proud of the way we pulled it out against a really well coached team in a tough environment. Finishing the game with two freshman on the court who are able to play with great confidence and composure is exciting to see.”
Alves led the Greenwave with 26 points and Sorensen added 21, and it was Alves who hit key shots down the stretch to force both overtime periods.
“Brady Alves really hurt us with his penetration and making outside shots,” Knutson said. “I thought our guys did a good job on Shawn (Alexander, Fallon’s leading scorer) taking two charges on him.”
On a night when the Vaqueros struggled to get into their offense, Caudle shouldered the load and scored 35 points. Anthony Winters added 10 points, and both Sheldon Jacobson and Garrett Harjo had eight.
“I thought Fallon did a good job mixing up defenses and didn’t let us get into a good offensive rhythm throughout the game,” Knutson said.
On Saturday, the Vaqueros somehow had enough left in the tank to hold off Lowry, 59-56. The Vaqueros built a 37-21 halftime lead, and were still up 47-32 going to the fourth quarter, where Lowry outscored them 24-12 before running out of time.
Williams led the Vaqueros with 14 points, Bryce Dunagan-Stephens had 13, Caudle added 12 and Cumming scored 10.
Jaelece Wasson poured I 20 points, but the rest of the Vaqueros combined to make just 11 of 41 shot attempts as the Vaqueros struggled to get their offense going in a 47-26 win at Fallon.
Leading 14-10, the Vaqueros held Fallon scoreless in the second quarter, stretching the advantage to 28-10, and they allowed only 16 points in the second half.
“We started out slow and just couldn’t get much going,” coach Ralph Dunn said. “It’s always a goal to try and score double digits each quarter. We did for three quarters, and Fallon just didn’t give up, which is a good thing.”
The Vaqueros had no such problems scoring Saturday at Lowry, and they needed every bit of it.
Five Vaqueros scored in double figures, led by a career high 29 by Jasmyne Torres. Tia Otuafi followed with 13 points, Taylor Tollestrup added 12 and both Kensey Kreller and Wasson scored 10.
Lowry’s Savannah Stoker finished with 42 points, which is incredibly not her career high. She had 43 in a game earlier this season against Lassen and averages 24.6 points per game.
Stoker was on fire all afternoon, hitting 15 of 24 field goal attempts and 12 of 16 free throws. Fortunately for the Vaqueros, Torres was perfect from the floor, hitting all nine of her shots, including two 3-pointers, and 9 of 11 free throws. Overall, the Vaqueros made 26 of 42 field goal attempts,
“What a game that was,” Dunn said. “It’s always a tough game at their place and Lowry was ready for us. A high scoring game and was really glad to come away with a win, especially on their home court.”