Three tests await the Fallon girls basketball team.
The Lady Wave faces three California schools at the Silver State Slam Tournament from Thursday through Saturday at McQueen High School in Reno. The Lady Wave opens the tournament against Weston Ranch at 6:30 p.m. then faces Castlemont at 10:30 a.m. Friday and wraps up the event against Palo Alto at 1 p.m. on Saturday.
After a home split against Spring Creek and Elko about two weeks ago, Lady Wave coach Anne Smith has been stressing consistency and ball security.
“We have worked on turnovers, transition and filling the lanes,” Smith added. “Offensively, that’s what we are hoping to see improve.”
For the past 11 days, Smith has hammered home taking care of the ball, crashing the boards and executing the transition game.
Fallon committed 20-plus turnovers in both games against Spring Creek and Elko. Moving the ball was an issue against Elko, as passes into the post routinely found the hands of the Lady Wave’s opponents.
The rebounding game was a force against Spring Creek as Fallon grabbed 20 boards but struggled against Elko with 18. The turnovers crippled the Lady Wave’s chances at a sweep of the Elko County schools.
“They’ve had some pretty hard workouts,” Smith said. “It’s been a very intense week of practice, but it was needed.”
As for the transition game, Smith said it was an area that struggled to find any rhythm. A fast-break opportunity would quickly fall apart, in large part due to an erratic passing game, which led to turnovers.
“It’s repetition,” Smith said. “We do them (drills) every day so hopefully, as we play more games we can get in a rhythm and be more consistent.”
Defensively, Fallon is amping up its ability to pressure the ball with its full-court press. Smith said her club has practiced numerous schemes to force the tempo and create its own odd fast-break opportunities.
“We will kind of change things up a little bit,” she said.
As for the tournament, it is an opportunity to Fallon to shore up its deficiencies and prepare for the rest of its Northern Division I-A slate. Smith said she does not know much about the three opponents, although she is prepared for three fast-paced games.
In California, a shot-clock is used, while Nevada does not use one.
“We are kind of anticipating that,” Smith said. “It’s a different look than when we play during the regular season. It will be a good three-day tournament, which will lead into our next league game (against Truckee).”