One school hopes to capture not just one state championship, but multiple. The other is competing in its first season in the NIAA.
After winning its first NIAA-sanctioned state title, the Lady Wave basketball team returns for its encore performance while the wrestling team, which finished second last year, is gearing toward another run. And for the boys basketball program, under a new but familiar coach, the goal is getting back to the postseason and dominating like its counterpart.
“After a close race for the team title this year, we came up short so this year we really have to work hard to try to win another state title,” said Fallon wrestling coach Trevor de Braga, whose assistant, Dan Shaw, helped run the offseason program. “We are returning four finalists and a third-place finisher.”
Girls basketball tryouts for freshmen, junior varsity and varsity are from 8-10 a.m. on Saturday and 3:30-5:30 p.m. on Monday at the Elmo Dericco Gymnasium. Boys basketball tryouts for junior varsity and varsity are from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., followed by freshmen from 12:30-2:30 p.m. on Saturday. The freshmen and junior varsity tryouts resume on Monday from 5:30-7 p.m., followed by varsity from 7-8:30 p.m.
Wrestling will not have tryouts but mandatory practice is from 8-11 a.m. on Saturday and 3:15-5:30 p.m. on Monday in the new gym.
“We have a bunch of football kids coming out this year who haven’t wrestled since junior high but there’s some big talent, which will help us tremendously,” de Braga said. “I can’t wait to get the season kicked off. It’s going to be a great one.”
But the Greenwave isn’t the only gig in town anymore.
Oasis Academy is now competing in the 1A after its volleyball and cross-country programs became the first this fall to play in the NIAA. The Bighorns will field both boys and girls basketball teams this winter.
Fallon and Oasis Academy will conduct tryouts on Saturday and Monday as games begin the week after Thanksgiving.
“I’m excited to run a program,” said first-year Bighorns boys basketball coach Donald Schank, who spent many years as an assistant with the Greenwave. “I’m excited for the coaches we have hired and their enthusiasm for the program. I’m excited about the dedication of the kids that have been coming out and the support of the parents. I’m most excited for the season to start.”
Oasis Academy will hold tryouts for girls basketball on Saturday from 8-11 a.m. at the Venturacci Gym, followed by boys basketball tryouts from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. No experience is required and attendance is mandatory for Saturday’s tryouts.
In addition to Schank running the boys program, Dusty Casey will lead the girls hoops team. Brandon Barns and Jake Lewis will coach the seventh- and eighth-grade boys teams, Cary Gantt is the junior varsity boys coach and Gavin and Tim Sorensen will lead the fourth-sixth-grade program.