RENO - The bright lights and speed of the varsity game were too much for the young Carson High girls basketball team Tuesday night.
The Senators went scoreless on their first seven possessions, and it didn't get a whole lot better from there as they fell to the Reno Huskies, 60-13, in the Division I opener for both schools.
Carson was 5-for-39 from the field and turned the ball over 25 times. Reno was led by Shalen Shaw's 17 points plus 11 by 6-4 freshman Mallory McGwire and 10 from 6-foot junior Morgan McGwire.
Despite the lopsided loss, Carson's first-year coach Nathan Tolbert believes he can build from the opening night performance.
"At the end of the game we started to move around instead of standing and watching," Tolbert said. "It felt like we played at three-quarters speed the whole game. We definitely didn't show what we were capable of. The pace of the game was something that most of them hadn't seen before.
"Savannah (Smith) did well, but you have to have five players. There is no one player that can win a game. Reno is a polished team. They play a lot.''
Carson had no answer for Shaw's quickness or the inside play of the McGwire sisters, who will arguably be the best 1-2 inside punch in Northern Nevada.
"She (Mallory McGwire) is going to be a pretty good player," Reno coach Shane Foster said. "We've been working on her footwork."
Foster admitted that the game gave him a chance to play his entire roster. And, players didn't have any pressure after bolting to an early 12-0 lead.
"There were a lot of nerves out there," Foster said. "I know they have a lot of players playing their first varsity game. It's a lot different than playing a JV or summer league game."
Carson opened the game with four straight turnovers without getting a shot up. The Senators' first shot came 2 1/2 minutes in to the contest, and the first score came two minutes after that. By that time, Reno had a 12-0 lead (16-3 after one quarter).
"They got down and I think their eyes got big," Tolbert said. "At the beginning of the second quarter, I thought we were going to get back into it."
The Senators held Reno scoreless for the first two minutes of the period, but Carson missed its first three shots of the quarter and wasn't able to gain any ground. Gigi Hascheff and Morgan McGwire drained 3-pointers to make it 22-3 with 5:54 left in the half. Reno walked off the floor at halftime with a 27-7 lead. Carson went 3-for-19 in the first 16 minutes.
Reno opened up a 40-11 lead thanks to a 13-4 burst to start the second half.
Carson, 0-1, returns to action Thursday at the Lowry Tournament.