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NU holds on to top Metro spot

The Union staff

The Nevada Union boys basketball team used its bench to survive a slow start Thursday at home, beating Hiram Johnson 82-60 to maintain sole possession of first-place in the Metro League.

“We just got off to a sluggish start,” said NU coach Jeff Dellis.

The Miners were only up 15-11 after the first quarter before scoring 24 points in the second period to claim a 39-28 halftime lead.

“The second quarter was better, but then coming out after halftime, I thought we were sluggish and flat, so I made a platoon substitution.”

Dellis pulled all five of his starters and replaced them with super-subs Nate Newport, Chad Mason, Travis Edwards, Joey Puleo and Zach Spencer.

“Those guys came in off the bench and did a great job,” Dellis said. “In the last six and a half minutes of the third quarter, they held Johnson to six points and scored 18. That kind of depth and energy coming off the bench makes us a more difficult team to play against.”

Edwards scored nine points during that run in the third and finished with 11 points, two rebounds, three assists and four steals.

Spencer also scored 11 for the Miners and had four rebounds and blocked three shots.

James Brindley picked up 10 points, while Metro league scoring leader Tyler Smith added seven. Mason chipped in with eight points to go with three rebounds, an assist and a blocked shot.

Kevin Nelson, the Metro League’s assists leader, padded his season total with 10.

“I’m encouraged by our depth and happy with our distribution of scoring,” Dellis said. “Seven players scored eight or more and 12 of the 14 players scored, so that’s pretty good balance.”

The Miners (18-7 overall, 7-1 league) start a three-game road trip Tuesday, traveling to Grant.

JV: Nevada Union 60, Johnson 44

Nevada Union made key adjustments at halftime to beat Johnson 60-44 Thursday.

After nursing a slim 31-29 lead at the half, the Miners put together a 13-5 third quarter to open up a lead.

“We had to make adjustments on offense and defense at halftime,” NU coach Dale Latimer said. “Those kids from Johnson are good. They can flat shoot the lights out. We had to go to a kind of half-man, half-zone ‘D’ to try and stop them.”

Nick Cancilla led the Miners with 19 points. Alex Bernadett scored 13, all in the first quarter, while Tim Conde had nine and John Wivholm scored eight.

Nevada Union (13-9, 9-1) will travel to Grant Tuesday.

Bear River 50, Mira Loma 43

The Bear River boys basketball team got all it could handle Thursday before beating Mira Loma 50-43 on the road.

Down by one point at halftime, the Bruins didn’t take the lead for good until Kevin Barker hit a three-point play with 16 seconds remaining.

“In the first half, we struggled to find our rhythm,” said Bear River coach Steve Box. “We were just out of sync.”

The Bruins started to pick it up in the third quarter as Jake Kirby grabbed two big steals and scored six points to boost the Bruins offensively.

Aaron Baker kept the pressure on in the fourth, scoring six of his 13 points in the final quarter.

Barker’s big play came with the scored tied at 43. Axel Wadman took the inbounds pass and found Baker open underneath the basket. Barker was fouled as he made the shot with 16 seconds left to give the Bruins the lead.

“This is a big win for us,” Box said. “We haven’t had a season like this in a long time. Though its still early, we’re looking at the playoffs.”

Bear River (11-10, 6-3) will go on the road Tuesday, playing at West Campus.

JV: Mira Loma 52, Bear River 34

The Bear River JV lost at Mira Loma Thursday 52-34. Josh Slakett was leading scorer for the Bruins with seven points.


Coaches may submit game reports for the Local Roundup by calling The Union at 477-4240.


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