Carson girls survive and advance to regional semifinal
Senators continue historic season with first postseason win since 2011-12
RENO – Carson High girls basketball set its season-long goal of winning a regional basketball game early in the season.
Tuesday night, Carson accomplished that goal by beating Reno, 43-41, and advancing to the semifinals of the Class 4A Northern Regional tournament.
With the opening round regional win, the Senators secure their first postseason win since 2011-12 over Spanish Springs, which was also to open regional play.
“Our goal at the beginning of the year was to win a playoff game,” said Carson head coach Doug Whisler. “Now our goal is to win another one.”
The Senator win sets up a third showdown between Carson and Bishop Manogue Thursday at 7:15 p.m. at Spanish Springs High School with the winner earning a spot in the state tournament.
The Miners have won both meetings against the Senators this year by finals of 74-46 Jan. 17 and 52-40 Feb. 4.
“Manogue’s tough. I think Manogue is the best team in the north,” said Whisler. “We’re going to have to have a good practice tomorrow and figure out their pressure.”
Senators will out a win
Carson did what it needed to on the defensive in the game’s waning moments, but the Senators couldn’t find baskets to put Reno away in the closing minutes.
Up 42-41 inside of the final minute, the Senators went 1-of-6 from the free throw line.
With a 43-41 lead, the Senators couldn’t convert on four chances at the free throw line, allowing the Huskies to get a final possession with a chance to send the game to overtime or win it.
Reno inbounded the ball from half court with 3.9 seconds to go, but a high pass fell into the lap of Carson senior guard Lily Bouza, who was able to push it away from Reno.
A Husky did underhand a desperation attempt from the free throw line, but the ball fell short of the rim as the buzzer sounded.
Bouza ended the night with a team-high 13 points for the Senators.
Dramatic final minutes
Carson led by 11 at the halftime intermission, 25-14, but the Huskies continuously climbed their way back into things over the course of the second half.
At the end of the third quarter, Carson’s lead had been cut to five, 35-30, and with four minutes remaining in the contest Reno had made it a two-point ball game, 39-37.
The wear and tear of chasing the Huskies around the court for 30-plus minutes started to show in the game’s final minutes.
“They just got tired. The game plan was to pressure,” said Whisler. “I noticed last game when we came out and pressured in the second half they got tired, so we just had to back off.”
Even with tired legs, the Senators’ defense looked like its usual self, antagonizing ball carriers on the wing and in the lane.
Caydee Farnworth scored the last bucket for Carson off an assist from Bella Kordonowy with 4:42 to play before the Senators finished it off on the defensive end and at the free throw line.
Kordonowy scored seven points in the opening quarter for Carson, including three points the hard way after gathering an offensive rebound for an interior basket through contact to make it 10-2 Carson.
The Senator senior ended the night with 11 points while Abby Golik added seven points.
Farnworth, Camryn Quilling and Naycy Alvarez each had four points in the win.
Northern region scores
While Carson awaits Bishop Manogue Thursday, Spanish Springs will host McQueen in the other regional semifinal.
The Cougars bested Douglas 56-22 Tuesday night while McQueen snuck past Damonte Ranch 50-47.