Though the stands cleared out quickly beforehand on Tuesday night, those who missed the Greenwave varsity boys team’s last game missed one of their arguably best performances of the season at home, defeating the Truckee Wolverines 50-33.
The Wave enter the post-season 10-15 overall and 7-9 in D1-A, while the Wolverines remain last at 2-20 overall and 0-14 in league with several games to go before the playoffs.
Fallon coach Brad Barton said the win was a big one to go out on before the seeding since he previously said it would be tough to enter the post-season on a loss, both for record and morale.
“Truckee made some trouble for us in the first half throwing that zone defense at us, but one we settled and sat down and our guys were a little less selfish with the ball we ran a good defense and offense,” Barton said.
Although the Wave fell behind in the first quarter, 10-8, the game was much closer than their previous ones due to the Wave’s boxed out defense. Greenwave players Connor Richardson and Dalton Kaady both visibly made a difference in Fallon’s full court press, while Marshall Coverston managed the court.
“It makes the bench deeper for sure,” Barton said of Richardson’s and Kaady’s hustle. “We were down two really good defensive players and short on the bench, so that makes a difference coming up.”
Fallon surged ahead in the second quarter when their defense crowded the center. Christian Nemeth was reliable for rebounds under the net, jumping high for possession and getting the ball to Dillan Rasmussen to score several baskets. After finishing the first half, 23-18, the Wave kept the lead for the rest of the night.
Barton commended all of his players, but said Nemeth made a definite difference in the game with his rebounding and scoring.
“Yeah, we finally got Nemeth to relax a little bit, and it worked out well,” Barton said, assessing his player’s game. “He was a little tight before but he actually did a really good job and even got in double figures. We know he made a big difference especially since he’s a little smaller but he jumps a little faster than some of the other big guys and can get off the ground a little quicker, and looking back that was definitely an advantage.”
Truckee’s third quarter was limited to five points by the Wave’s defensive pressure with Kaleel Rickerson guarding the center with height and speed. Rickerson focused passing to Cade Vercellotti and Rasmussen, two of the quicker Fallon players that outran Truckee’s defense for numerous layups.
Fallon’s perimeter shooting took a back seat to their action under the glass in the fourth quarter, playing more like a team ahead than in previous games. Truckee’s Justin Wadsworth was the only reliable rebounder in the second half. Though the Wolverines fought for another 10 points offensively, defensively their inability to box out hurt them on the boards and let Fallon win the game.
Coverston and Rasmussen each led the Wave with 11 points each, followed by Nemeth with 10 and Vercellotti with seven.
Nothing is definite for the Wave’s future, but coach Barton said it is looking like Fallon will square off at North Valley High School against the Fernley Vaqueros on Thursday if everything goes right on paper.
“We’re just trying to get better regardless,” Barton said of practice from here on out. “We’re still working on playing together as a team and developing our chemistry. We’re learning to keep doing right what we do right on offense.”