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The Pride of the School

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There are always fun and games to be had in Tahoe, but sports don’t usually fall amongst such trivial pursuits around here. No sir. Sports are serious business in Tahoe.

From the Truckee broomball league to the Olympics, X-Games, and XTERRA, the competition and talent around town for most sports is world class. Maybe it’s the Sierra air or the water, but for whatever reason, local professional athletes have repeatedly shown the dedication and commitment that it takes to be a champion.

That drive to win isn’t lost on local prep athletes either. High school teams from Truckee, North Tahoe, and Incline Village are top ranked in state tournaments year after year. Could it be that same water in the school drinking fountains? More likely it’s the practice and the determination that all of our local athletes have in common.

Every fall, winter, and spring, hundreds of students rise to the challenge and play a sport whose demands and rewards are of truly epic proportions. When you’re 16 it might not seem like a big deal, but if you compared being a student athlete to a commitment in an adult’s life, it’s like having two full-time jobs with a two-hour commute to one of them (away games in Elko, Fernley and Yerington). There is no doubt all scholar athletes who successfully balance school and sports are deserving of significant praise for their daunting effort.

Rolling into October we are in the heart of the fall prep season with the first regional tournaments just around the corner. While I wish I had the space to highlight stellar results and achievements by all the local prep teams, I’ve honed my spotlight on one team from each high school whose recent success has made them the pride of their school as they head into postseason play.

Truckee Girls Volleyball
The Truckee Girls Volleyball team is poised for a run at the state title yet again. Undefeated in league play and 16-4 overall as of Oct. 15, the Wolverine team has followed a simple recipe for success according to head coach Nicole Annaloro.

'We’ve got great chemistry,' said Annaloro. '…and a strong work ethic.'

Solid teamwork comes as no surprise as the seven varsity seniors have been playing together for three years. The Wolverine defense has been led by the backcourt talent of seniors Kaylee Waters (team libero) and Lindsay Nason. Hitting from the net, senior Merry Brown and sophomore Annie Reiswig have led the offensive attack.

Truckee will start regional playoffs the first weekend of November. Though they hold the number one seed in their hands at the moment, there are no guarantees with a tough game against Yerington still on the schedule.

North Tahoe Cross-Country
The fleet feet of the North Tahoe Cross-Country team have been beating a path to top results since the first meet of the season. Carried on the strength of returning varsity runners such as Hugo Ramirez, Miles Heaps, Angel Gonzalez, Maiya Greenwood, and the Postler triplets (Sierra, Carlie, and Amber), the boys and girls Laker teams are stacked with both speed and experience.

Despite all the race miles the team has seen, Laker head coach Warren Mills attributed their success to one thing.

'They just work hard,' said Mills.

The Lakers will put their mettle to the test at the Oct. 29 regional meet in Elko. Ramirez and Greenwood should be running into the meet hot, likely seeded in the top three.

Incline Boys Soccer
Of all the prep sports, boys soccer is usually the most evenly matched amongst the three local high schools. Not this year.

The Incline Highlander boys soccer team is without a doubt the top team in the region, if not the state. Their 15-1-1 overall record speaks clearly to that.

'Our strength is our ability to possess the ball,' said Highlander head coach Tom Canino. 'When we play possession we shut teams down.'

The Incline attack has been led by eight seniors, seven of which have played varsity for three years or more. Seniors Alex Reyes and Michael Ceragioli are the top scorers while seniors Johnny Luna and Peter Salazar have been a brick wall on defense.

The Highlander’s have their eyes on the top prize going into the regional playoffs the second weekend of November. Matching tenacity with talent, the senior-heavy team is well poised to make state title dreams a reality.

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July 12, 2018