One came easy, the other was a fight.
The Fallon girls basketball team swept Northern Division I-A foes Dayton, 55-18, and Lowry, 42-38, last weekend to keep pace atop the league standings.
The Lady Wave rallied from a five-point fourth-quarter deficit to slip past the Buckaroos on Saturday.
Once again, Gabby Sharpe’s long-range barrage of 3-pointers kept the Lady Wave in the game as the senior drilled four 3s. She had a game-high 18 points, while forward Megan McCormick added 10 to lift Fallon to its third straight win.
Fallon hosted Lassen on Tuesday, but results were not available at press time.
“Lowry’s a good team,” Fallon coach Anne Smith said. “Gabby hit some 3-pointers and we took control of the boards. Really, that’s what did it. That was a good win.”
Fallon visits Sparks (1-4 league, 1-9 overall) and South Tahoe (3-3, 4-9) Friday and Saturday before the return trip to Spring Creek (6-1, 10-9) and Elko (4-1, 8-3) on Jan. 24-25.
The victories, though, kept the Lady Wave in second place just half a game behind Spring Creek and Elko.
The emergence of Sharpe’s outside shooting, however, has altered the Lady Wave’s offense. As a legitimate perimeter threat, opponents can no longer stuff the key and focus on Megan McCormick, Kayla Buckmaster and Hannah Lindsay.
In addition, Ali Tedford’s ability to penetrate the defense also allows Sharpe to spot-up and fire away.
“It’s taken a little pressure off our inside game,” Smith said of Sharpe’s shooting.
Against Dayton, sophomore Patricia Leggett led the Lady Wave with 10 points, while McCormick and Buckmaster each scored nine.
A bonus for Smith, though, was the ability to go deep into her bench against Dayton. Leggett along with Janelica Galera Ali Johnson and Hannah Frank all saw significant minutes.
Leggett, a sophomore guard, also tallied three steals leading to fast-break buckets, while Galera ran the offense and Johnson and Frank gathered beneficial minutes in the post.
Defensively, the foursome held the Dust Devils to six points in the second half.
“I liked their defense,” Smith said. “I was proud of that second team for their defense. They did a good job. Offensively, Pat stepped up and got a couple steals and took some nice outside shots.”
An area of constant concern this season, though, has been the Lady Wave’s struggles to break a full-court press. Against Lowry, Smith was pleased with the effort as the girls were able to sufficiently break the press and set up the offense.
“Ali Tedford was able to dribble through it most of the time,” Smith said. “Hopefully it gave them the confidence to not be afraid of a press. It was a good, strong press (by Lowry).”
Defensively, Fallon’s press turned over Lowry and helped spark the rally in the fourth quarter.
“I think they felt if they could do it against Lowry they could do it against anyone,” Smith added.