Courtesy photo
Eureka junior Wilfred Bailey attempts a layup against Tonopah at the Wells Rural Electric Invitational tournament last weekend.

Boys get win over Round Mountain

By Dave Maxwell

Morgan Thomas, one of the only two seniors on the Eureka Vandals girls basketball team, led the Lady Vandals to a 4-0 mark at the Wells Rural Electric Invitational tournament last weekend.

The girls started with a 49-29 win over defending 1A state champion Pahranagat Valley, followed by a 53-22 win over Tonopah, 51-26 over the Elko JVs, and finally a 48-23 win over Round Mountain.

Thomas had 20 points in the game with Pahranagat. She followed with 16 against Tonopah and was backed up by with sophomore Gracie Garrett with 13 points.

Thomas and Townsend both had 10 points in the game with the Elko JVs. Sophomore Ilyhia Greely was high point in that game with 12.

Thomas broke loose again against Round Mountain with a game high 22 points which gave her a four-game total of 68 points, a nice start to the season.

Coach Travis Gallagher said his other senior, Angelica Townsend, backed up Thomas in the game with Pahranagat Valley adding 14 points. “And our defense played well. We got lots of steals against them. Morgan stole the ball quite a bit, especially in the fourth quarter. That’s when we really broke it open. She shot 62 percent for the game from the floor.”

Eureka had a 29-22 lead going into the final period, Gallagher said, but outscored the Panthers 20-7 to account for the winning margin. “Alamo got a little tired it looked like, and we were still going. Thomas and Townsend played well together. Morgan hooked up with Angelica multiple times to give Angelica her points.

The second game against Tonopah again saw everyone play well, Gallagher said. “We put a press on them in the second quarter and broke it open with a 20-point output and a 31-13 halftime lead.”

He said in the second half he was “able to play some of my younger players.” Sophomore Gracie Garrett had 13 points to compliment Thomas’ 16 points.

“Our defense is looking good at this point in the season,” he said. “That’s what I’m keying on this year. We were lacking defense last year, so we are working even harder now this year on defense and it showed because we kept each of our four opponents below 30 points in every game during this tournament.”

In the last game with Round Mountain, Gallagher said “We just ran it on them. Our defense played strong and we held them scoreless in the second quarter. Here again, I was able to play many of the non-starters in the second half.

Gallagher expects things to get a lot tougher this weekend as the Lady Vandals participate in the Whittell tournament Dec. 6-8 at Zephyr Cove.

“It will have competition against teams we don’t normally see,” he said. “We’re starting to play well together, our defense is looking better and better each time, showing us to be strong.”

The Lady Vandals have games at the Whittell tournament slated with 2A schools Incline and Pershing County, 3A Truckee, and new Central League member Mineral County.

Eureka plays at the Round Mountain tournament Dec. 14-15. After that the Vandals are off for the holiday break and action picks up after New Year’s with a non-league game at home against Tonopah Jan. 4. The first league games are an out town trip Jan. 11-12 to Carlin and Owyhee.

On the boys side, they also played at the same tournament. Scores showed the Vandals lost 56-47 to Pahranagat Valley. The boys led 41-39 going into the fourth quarter, but the Panthers outscored them 17-6 to take the come-from-behind win.

The next game was a loss to Tonopah 41-31 as they only scored double figures in one quarter. But their third game was a 39-32 win over Round Mountain. Individual scoring stats for each game were not available.

This Friday and Saturday, the boys are at the Whittell tournament. Their first game is with Mammoth, California and a Saturday game with Incline. Other games may be scheduled but were not listed.

On Dec. 14-15, the Vandal boys and girls, play at the Round Mountain tournament. Then they will be off until after the holiday break and start again Jan. 4 hosting Tonopah.

For the wrestling team, they open their season this Friday and Saturday participating in the Cody Louk tournament at Pershing County High School in Lovelock.