Basketball: Sierra Lutheran reaps rewards for breakout season |

Basketball: Sierra Lutheran reaps rewards for breakout season

by Joey Crandall
Jim Grant/The Record-Courier



Alex Borgman 333

Carson Iverson 260

Michael Patrick 252

Nick Walker 242

Jared Hamilton 112

Jusdan Mondragon 48

Griffin Kale 29

Jacob Rodriguez 25

Evan Lewis 17

Ryan West 4

Karl Ricks 2

Chris Eckert 2


Carson Iverson 39

Michael Patrick 16

Nick Walker 14

Alex Borgman 11


Alex Borgman 187

Michael Patrick 161

Nick Walker 85

Carson Iverson 74

Jared Hamilton 61

Griffin Kale 44

Evan Lewis 29

Jusdan Mondragon 26

Jacob Rodriguez 24

Ryan West 16

Karl Ricks 11

Chris Eckert 3


Carson Iverson 85

Nick Walker 63

Jared Hamilton 58

Michael Patrick 50

Alex Borgman 47

Jacob Rodriguez 15

Jusdan Mondragon 12

Ryan West 12

Griffin Kale 8

Evan Lewis 5

Karl Ricks 2

Chris Eckert 1


Nick Walker 61

Alex Borgman 50

Jared Hamilton 45

Michael Patrick 35

Carson Iverson 31

Jusdan Mondragon 24

Jacob Rodriguez 15

Ryan West 13

Griffin Kale 7

Evan Lewis 5

Karl Ricks 2

Blocked Shots

Michael Patrick 42

Alex Borgam 17

Nick Walker 14

Carson Iverson 10

Evan Lewis 10

Griffin Kale 8

Jared Hamilton 6

Ryan West 3

Jusdan Mondragon 2

Karl Ricks 2

Chris Eckert 1

Jacob Rodriguez 1

After clinching the first playoff berth in school history and surpassing a number of other big milestones along the way, the Sierra Lutheran High School boys basketball team was bound to reap some postseason recognition.

The Falcons got plenty of it as the all-league awards were announced recently.

Senior center Alex Borgman became the school’s first-ever first-team all-league honoree, Carson Iverson earned a second-team nod, Nick Walker and Michael Patrick were honorable mentions and Alan Reed was named the league’s Coach of the Year.

“It was a special year,” Reed said. “The kids figured things out. They learned to compete and things went well for them. They just kept getting better and accomplished some very special things. You have to be happy with that.”

Aside from the playoff berth, Sierra Lutheran picked up wins against Virginia City, Coleville and Smith Valley — all schools the Falcons had not previously defeated. They swept the season series from both Coleville and Smith Valley.

“When it comes down to defining this season, it’s tough to look past the Virginia City win,” Reed said.

Sierra Lutheran was on the road and trailed 48-40 with 2:15 remaining in the game.

“You won’t get much argument in saying that Virginia City is one of the toughest places to play,” Reed said.

The Falcons staged a comeback in the waning minutes and walked away with a 53-51 win. Nick Walker hit three 3-pointers in the final two minutes, nailed a pair of key free throws and accounted for 11 of his team’s final 13 points. He finished with 23 points, five steals and three assists.

“I don’t know what happened with him, but he went into outer space or something,” Reed said. “He was just unbelievable those last couple minutes. The whole team just rose to the occasion.

“All the kids believed they could do it. It was a huge night for this high school. The place went crazy, the fans went nuts after the game. To beat a program with such a storied history, something that hasn’t been done in the nine years of this school, and to come back and do it in that fashion, I think everyone was just stunned. It was beyond a special night. The thrill was just incredible.”

The following night, Sierra Lutheran slugged through a tough 66-52 win at Coleville, this time getting 20 points and nine rebounds from Michael Patrick.

“We were dog tired from the night before,” Reed said. “The kids put it all out there and didn’t really have much left. They found a way though. Michael Patrick carried us.”

The Falcons opened the year against a tough non-conference slate, playing a number of games against California schools.

“We went away from taking on some of the smaller schools from around here that maybe we could pick up some easier wins against,” Reed said. “We wanted real tests with the idea of getting better against tougher competition.

“We struggled at the start. We racked up some losses, but the important thing was the kids were learning and improving.”

The Falcons followed that with a 3-1 performance at the State Farm JV Tournament in Reno, going up against junior varsity programs from larger schools like Reno and Spanish Springs. Sierra Lutheran defeated Spanish Springs on a buzzer-beater from Walker, completing a 15-point comeback over the final three minutes.

“That was a very pivotal point of our season,” Reed said. “You could see things starting to come together for the kids.”

Sierra Lutheran then opened league play with a 53-46 win over Smith Valley, another first.

The Falcons went on to tie a school record in wins at 12.

Borgman, who was the team’s MVP, averaged 13.3 points per game and 7.5 rebounds during the season and wrapped up his career with 553 rebounds and 814 points, which was good enough for No. 2 on the school’s all-time list.

The top spot was claimed by Carson Iverson, who wrapped up his career with 883 points and set new school marks in 3-pointers (160) and assists (85).

“Alex and Carson were my two seniors,” Reed said. “We have eight guys coming back next year, but those are two tough pairs of shoes to fill.”

Patrick set a school mark for blocked shots in a season at 42.

Part of the breakout was in large part credited to Sierra Lutheran completing an entire offseason schedule at the AAU level.

“This was our first full-time offseason shot,” Reed said. “We merged our program with the Carson Valley Basketball Association and were able to do a lot of tournaments. Corey Thacker and Brian Mello were so good to us and helping us out and getting us a couple guys when we were short. The overall experience was very beneficial to what we saw during the regular season.

“We ended up playing 25 games during the summer and 20 of them were against California teams. We ramped things up with them and we started to see results. With such a big returning group for next year, I’m very excited to see what they accomplish with the extra work.”