Injury can’t stop Muckers in state semifinal game
RENO – Virginia City star Gigi Glogovac was in pain when she left the locker room at North Valleys High School.
She had taken a shot to the stomach before the half, and then was accidentally tripped on a drive to the basket, causing her to land on her knees. Skin on hardwood. Not a good feeling, ever.
Glogovac managed to score nine of her team-high 16 points in the third quarter to help her team to a 15-point lead. The Muckers went on to a 49-36 win over Lake Mead in the 1A state semifinals Friday night.
The win sends the Muckers (28-2) into today’s championship game at 3:20 p.m. at Lawlor Events Center against McDermitt, a 41-30 winner over Pahranagat Valley, the No. 1 seed in Southern Nevada. The Muckers will play for their first state title in school history.
Glogovac has always been the center of attention for opposing defenses, and Friday was no exception. The Eagles mixed up three defensive styles throughout the game, all designed to keep the ball out of her hands.
“They did a pretty job of that,” Glogovac said, wincing in pain. “It just opens up opportunities for other people which is good.”
And, she had plenty of help. Jill Dupre complemented Glogovac offensively with 11 points, while Alexa Ballinger added nine, Jessica Bailey eight and Taylor Parsons five, all in the first half.
“Those girls have done that all year,” Virginia City coach Todd Hess said. “Teams pay so much attention to Gigi, we always have girls that look for their opportunities to score.”
Lake Mead trailed by 11 early in the game, but whittled the lead down to one, 18-17, with 3 minutes, 7 seconds left in the half.
Dupre scored from the key and then Glogovac drove the lane and scored. She was knocked to the floor and in immense pain. She left the game for the rest of the half. Dupre capped the mini 5-0 run with a free throw to give the Muckers a 23-17 lead at the half.
“I still don’t know what happened,” Glogovac said. “It still hurts.”
At one point before the second half started, Glogovac motioned to Hess that she couldn’t go. Hess told her to take some shots, and when the half started Glogovac was on the floor.
The Muckers opened the second half like they ended the first.
Bailey scored, Glogovac knocked down two free throws, and after a Lake Mead turnover, Dupre scored on a hard drive to the basket to make it 29-18. She was fouled on the play, but missed the free throw. After a Lake Mead free throw, Glogovac completed the 8-1 surge with a layup to make it 31-18 with 6:26 left.
“We made a nice run to get back into the game,” Lake Mead coach Derek Anderson said. “They had a lot more energy than we did at the start of the second half. They are so long and they were able to take us out of our rhythm.”
“The second half start was really big,” Hess said. “We weren’t sure whether we were going to have Gigi, so we adjusted the game plan a little bit.”
Lake Mead briefly cut the lead to 31-22 on back-to-back baskets by sophomore Jordan Clarke, but Glogovac took over with a 3-pointer from the top of the key and a two-pointer. Ballinger drained a 3-pointer to up the Muckers’ lead to 39-24 after three.
Lake Mead put together runs of 7-2 and 5-0 in the fourth quarter to trim the lead to 45-36 with 1:33 left, but that’s as close as the Eagles would get. Dupre and Ballinger closed out the game with baskets to the delight of the big Virginia City rooting section.
NOTES: Virginia City shot 33 percent from the field compared to 28 percent for the Eagles, who never had more than four field goals in any one quarter … Lake Mead had a 43-40 edge on the boards. Dupre led the Muckers with nine rebounds and Bailey pulled down seven.