Girls’ Basketball: Lady Tigers turned heads for right reasons |

Girls’ Basketball: Lady Tigers turned heads for right reasons

by Joey Crandall

Douglas High girls’ basketball coach Werner Christen walked off the court following his team’s 68-35 loss to eventual regional champ Reed in the first round of the playoffs last week.

A Reed parent grabbed him by the arm and said, “Your girls sure play hard. They do everything the right way.”

Christen thanked them and went on his way.

“This program is respected,” he said with a shrug later. “All we heard this year is how the girls did things right. Win or lose, they carried themselves well. They respect the game and they did everything we asked of them.”

It was a culture fostered by a strong group of seniors, Christen said.

“It’s one of the finest senior classes we’ve ever had,” he said. “The program is better now than before they entered it.

“We told the younger kids they have big shoes to fill. All 10 kids this year were great amassadors of the school this year. The seniors were just an extraordinary group. They’ll all play something at the next level. Whatever they do, they are going to be successful.”

After missing the playoffs for two consecutive seasons – the first and longest such drought since 2000-01 – the Lady Tigers came back strong this year, posting 11 wins and punching a ticket into the playoffs.

“We knew we would have to build things back up,” Christen said. “We’re probably a step ahead of where we thought we’d be at this point.”

Douglas says goodbye to a sizeable senior class – half of its roster and the bulk of its starting lineup – but cultivated a solid returning core this year.

Junior Diana Regalado emerged as a starter by the end of the season. She and fellow junior Desiree Cage should be among the top frontcourt tandems in the league next season.

Freshman Corryne Millett also took significant strides during the year, tallying a

nice nine-point effort against Spanish Springs in the latter portion of the season.

But the tone for the season was set by the seniors, a group which had largely been together for three full seasons at the varsity level.

Douglas captured a 37-36 win over North Valleys to open the year and quickly pushed that into a 5-2 record.

The Lady Tigers boasted one of the better defenses in the Sierra League. They were able to add a steady transition game to it, which helped produce more offense.

Midway through the year, in a 66-39 loss to Reed of all things, the Tigers were able to find their stride attacking the basket and launched forth on one of the most successful stretches the program has had in a number of years.

It started with a 56-50 loss at Galena in overtime, but the 50 points was the most the offense had produced in a league game since Jan. 2010.

The Tigers then rattled off three consective wins, all by double-digit margins and two by 20 points or more.

A five-game slide brought an end to most of that momentum but the Tigers were able to post a nice 45-28 win over Damonte Ranch to close out the regular season.

Joey Crandall can be reached at (775) 782-5121, ext. 212.