Basketball: Douglas boys, girls top Hug |

Basketball: Douglas boys, girls top Hug

by Joey Crandall

It took nearly an extra hour to get there, and another 10 minutes after tipoff for boths teams to find their legs.

But, once the Douglas and Hug boys basketball teams settled in Friday night, they managed to put on yet another classic showdown.

Douglas came back from an second quarter deficit of 10 points and then held on through a number of potential game-tying or game-winning shots over the final minute to claim a 51-49 win over the top-ranked Hug Hawks in Minden.

The game was nearly an hour late in starting as a Friday evening snow storm snarled rush-hour traffic between Reno and Minden. The Hawks endured nearly a two-hour bus ride before arriving in Carson Valley at 7:45 p.m.

They were greeted by a loud round of applause from the crowd in the Douglas gym, which had largely been waiting since the conclusion of the girls game at 6:30.

When the game finally tipped off after 8 p.m., it took a while for both teams to find a rhythm.

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Douglas opened the game on an 8-2 run, but Hug roared back with a 19-3 run of its own to go up 21-11 midway through the second quarter.

“It was weird that way,” Douglas coach Corey Thacker said. “They’d been sitting on a bus for two hours and our kids had been waiting around for two hours. I think each team took their turn with a sluggish stretch though.

“Once we all got going, though, it was just good basketball all the way around.”

Hug built its 10-point lead on the strength of seven offensive rebounds in the second quarter.

“They were killing us on the offensive glass,” Thacker said. “We knew we had to make some changes.”

The Tigers managed to stop the bleeding with an 11-3 run capped by a big 3-pointer from Austin Evans. Evans scored five points during the run and Hunter Myers scored four.

Myers finished with a game-high 23 points for the Tigers and Evans added nine.

Douglas’ Joe Syammach converted a drive to the basket just before the buzzer sounded for halftime, cutting Hug’s lead to 27-22.

The third quarter was nearly all Douglas as the Tigers outscored Hug 16-6. The teams traded baskets on the first four possessions of the half before a James Herrick lay-up brought the Tigers to within three at 28-31.

“I liked our defense a lot better in the second half,” Thacker said. “We didn’t give up any offensive rebounds in that third quarter. That was a great effort on the kids’ part. We went from five down to five up. That’s a crucial swing in the game.”

Syammach, who has been put up a number of key baskets all season long, hit twin drives to the hoop to extend a 6-0 run and give the Tigers their first lead since the first quarter at 32-31.

He later brought the Tigers back again in the fourth with another baseline drive to tie the game at 49 with 2:41 left.

“Joe really worked hard over the summer, especially on his strength, and that has showed in some of these types of situations when he is getting to the hoop,” Thacker said. “Those were big baskets.”

The Tigers exited the third with a 38-33 lead, but Hug all but erased it with a pair of unanswered baskets to start the fourth. From there, the lead changed hands four more times and the teams were tied at two other spots during the quarter.

Hug did extend a five-point lead at 49-44 wth 3:25 left and appeared ready to pull away, but the Tiger defense kept Hug without a field goal over the remainder of the game.

Myers had a pair of baskets sandwiched around Syammach’s tying shot to set the score at its final.

Douglas missed a pair of lay-ups over the final minute and turned the ball over with 20 seconds left, giving the Hawks a final shot.

Hug’s Sam Williams, who led the Hawks with 22 points, took the last shot, a jumper that bounced off the rim, and Douglas’ James Herrick was fouled on the rebound with 0.7 seconds left. The inbound pass to Evans ran out the clock.

The win bumped Douglas to 10-6 overall on the year and 6-1 in Northern Division I play. Hug dropped to 11-3 overall and 6-2 in league play.

The Lady Tigers left little doubt from the outset Friday night, breezing past Hug for a 52-23 win in Minden.

Douglas opened the game on a 6-0 run and held the Hawks without a field goal over the first seven minbutes in the win.

Desiree Cage and McKenna Kynett led the scoring, pouring in 13 and 10 points respectively. Sophomore Leonna Mortimer had a breakout performance with nine points and sophomore Corryne Millett scored eight.

Diana Regalado and Kassidy Freitas each put up four points and Mandy Weaver and Maddy Ryan each had two.

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