Dayton off to slow start in Division play |

Dayton off to slow start in Division play

Staff reports

Dayton High School’s boys can still emerge as the Division II league basketball champions this winter.

But it’s going to be a tough road to hoe for the Dust Devils, who fell to 0-2 in division play with a 48-45 overtime loss at home to Whittell (1-1) on Saturday night.

“Our expectations were to start out better, but we can’t panic,” said Dayton coach Ric Garcia. “It’s tough to be down two games at the start of the season.”

Playing without guard Anthony Martinez, who was still feeling the effects of a sprained ankle suffered against Lovelock on Wednesday, Dayton held a precarious 43-42 lead headed into the fourth quarter.

Whittell took a two-point lead on a 3-pointer early in the fourth, but Dayton responded with a basket of its own to tie the game at 45-45. Dayton got the ball back and hung on to it, trying for the game’s final shot. But the Dust Devils were called for charging with 20 seconds remaining in regulation and were forced into overtime.

In the overtime, Whittell’s Todd Echan was the only player to score, as the Dust Devils were held without a point in the extra stanza. He scored a field goal early in the overtime and later added a free throw after being fouled under the basket on a subsequent possession.

Dayton’s scoring was led by Josh Goss, who had 12 points, and Bobby Nylen and Adam Sayre, who had nine points apiece.

Whittell’s leading scorer was Matt Wiggins with 13 points.

Dayton will look to record its first division win of the season on Friday at Hawthorne.