The Pershing County High School basketball team wrapped up its season this past weekend at the Northern 2A Regional Tournament in Winnemucca. The girls beat West Wendover 58-27 on Thursday but lost to Incline 59-24 in the semifinal round on Friday night at Lowry High School.
Pershing County missed Presley Burrows, sidelined by an injury. JV players Anna Happy, Yasmine McKinney and Ayren Sam pitched in. They’re part of what coach Lee Houston refers to as a “young nucleus.”
“They gained a ton of experience this season,” he said.
On Thursday, they joined Aaliyah Allen, Kairi Watson, Bela Rosas, Raegan Burrows, Taylor Garland and Kylee Fuller on the court. Aledda Sam has supported them from the bench all season.
Early on, Lovelock trailed the Wolverines by 6-0.
The Mustangs responded with a 30-7 run going into the half.
“Our plan was to capitalize on our post advantage,” said Houston.
The strategy worked. The Mustangs outscored West Wendover 38-12 in the paint.
Kaydance Happy scored a double double with 17 points and 12 rebounds. Aaliyah Allen was not far behind with 10 points and eight rebounds. Her fellow freshman, Raegan Burrows scored 12 points, grabbed six rebounds and had four steals.
“All in all, everyone chipped in for a post-season team win,” said Houston. Pershing won both games against Wendover this year. The first took place at PCHS in mid-January.
The Mustangs came out ahead with a final score of 43-30. On Feb. 11 the Mustangs beat the Wolverines 55-31 on the road.
In round two Lovelock faced the top-ranked team in the 2A, the Incline Highlanders.
“Going into the game we knew we had a tough task ahead of us,” said Houston. “Incline has clearly been the best team in our league all season. The girls represented our school with great attitude and effort even though things didn’t go their way. That’s what we’re most proud of.”
Pershing County lost both regular season games against Incline this year.
Meanwhile at the playoffs, Battle Mountain beat North Tahoe 40-26.
The championship round came down to Battle Mountain and Incline. The Highlanders walked away with the trophy 45-17. However, the Lovelock girls remain upbeat as they prepare for prom, graduation,softball and track;.
“We are losing four amazing seniors that have paved a path for their younger teammates to follow,” said Houston. “Bela Rosas, Kylee Fuller, Presley Burrows and Aledda Sam have been leaders on and off the court for the past four years.”
The Mustangs finished up at 18-10, overall, and 9-5 in the 2A.
“The future of Lady Mustangs basketball is bright,” said Houston. “The girls didn’t like losing and not making it to State. They say they’re going to put in the work and next year will be different. We’re excited to see what the future holds.”