PREPS: Carson boys lose third straight
MINDEN – Gym time. That’s been Carson basketball coach Carlos Mendeguia’s mantra since making his final cuts.
Carson had one full team practice before playing three straight tournament games last week. The Senators had one day of practice before Tuesday’s nightmare loss to Reed and only a day of practice before starting play in the three-day Carson Valley Classic.
Carson, which still isn’t in sync offensively, dropped a 45-42 decision to Faith Lutheran of Las Vegas on Thursday, but Mendeguia was pleased with his team’s performance.
“I was happy with the way we came out and played,” Mendeguia said. “We played like we wanted to be here. Tuesday was a nightmare.
“We’re still not there (offensively). The guys are worried about the spots where they are supposed to be instead of playing the game. It’s going to take a couple of weeks to get it (the offense).”
Thursday’s game came down to the final seconds, and it was an offensive rebound by D.J. Manning that killed the Senators. Carson had two different chances to win in the final 10 seconds, but couldn’t knock down a shot.
Faith Lutheran led 43-42 when D’Khari Hicks stepped to the line with 31 seconds left to shoot a 1-and-1. He missed the first shot, Manning picked up the ball and followed it in to make it 45-42 with 27 seconds left.
Mendeguia took a timeout with 20 seconds left to set up a game-tying 3-point play. The Senators didn’t get the shot they wanted, and Matt Nolan’s (11 points, six rebounds, four assists, four steals) shot was off the mark.
“We were trying to get the ball to Rafe (King) coming off a double screen,” Mendeguia said. “Rafe didn’t feel he could get a shot off. Matt had a good look, the ball just didn’t go down.”
Carson fouled Christopher Stroud, who kept Carson’s hopes alive by missing the front end of the ensuing 1-on-1.
Austin Pacheco came downcourt and put up a 3-pointer which was off the mark.
Carson used a 9-3 run in the last four minutes of the second quarter to grab a 25-20 halftime lead.
Ty Keefer (10 points) gave Carson an 18-17 lead with 4:12 left, Two free throws by Nolan made it 20-17 with 3:33 left. Hicks, who had four 3-pointers in the first half, knotted the game at 20 with a trey. King gave the Senators the 25-20 lead with a 3-pointer and a drive to the basket.
Hicks’ shooting kept the Crusaders in the game. He had 14 of their 20.
“He did,” Faith Lutheran coach Bret Walter said. “If he wasn’t shooting like he did we wouldn’t have been close. We missed a ton of open shots.”
The teams exchanged baskets for the first 2 1/2 minutes of the third quarter, and then Faith Lutheran went on an 11-2 run for a 35-30 lead. Sam Stevens had seven of the Crusaders’ 11 in that span. Carson went almost five minutes without a point.
“We just got impatient,” Mendeguia said. “I was harping about being patient. They see an open lane and it’s just too good to pass up.”
Carson trailed 39-33 after three, and then went on a 7-0 run for a 40-39 lead. Faith Lutheran scored six of the next eight to put the game away.