Lowry’s McKenzi Petersen battles for a rebound with a North Valleys player on Friday night.
Lowry’s McKenzi Petersen battles for a rebound with a North Valleys player on Friday night.
Even though most of the Winterfest activities were Friday night, the game of the weekend in Winnemucca was on Saturday afternoon, as the Lowry High School girls basketball team hosting Truckee.
At stake was the No. 2 seed in the Northern 3A and a first-round bye in the upcoming Northern 3A Regional Tournament. Lowry won the first meeting 59-47 in mid-December, but a dry spell on offense in the second quarter on Saturday cost the Lady Bucks. Truckee held Lowry to two points in the second quarter to build a double-digit lead.
The Wolverines had to hold on in the final seconds to preserve a 39-37 and move into second place in the league at 11-2, while Lowry dropped to third at 10-2.
Points were hard to come by in the first quarter for both teams, as Lowry built a 5-3 lead off of buckets by Emily Backus and Sierra Maestrejuan, after Truckee scored the first points of the game.
The Lady Bucks had a chance to extend the lead, but was 1-of-8 from the free throw line in the opening eight minutes of the contest. Free throw shooting would come back to haunt Lowry, as the squad as 9-of-28 in the game.
Lowry led 7-6 after the first quarter, but managed just one basket in the second quarter. 
Truckee scored the first 14 points of the period to lead 20-7. The Lady Bucks finally broke the scoreless streak with a basket by Jovi Kuskie with 2:33 left in the first half. The Wolverines eventually held a 20-9 lead at halftime.
“We got into a little bit of foul trouble again and we lost our way on offense,” said LHS coach Melanie Thurmond. “Our free throw shooting didn’t help us either. I’m not sure what it was today, we practice free throws all the time. We usually shoot free throws pretty good.”
Truckee maintained a 12-point advantage midway through the third quarter, when Lowry cut the deficit to 25-20 on the strength of a 7-0 run.
 McKenzi Petersen had five of those points. However, the Wolverines quickly pushed the lead back to nine points at 29-20, when Kuskie and Maestrejuan knocked down 3-pointers in the final minute to close the gap to 29-26 at the start of the fourth quarter.
Truckee opened the fourth quarter with a 3-pointer of its won to go back up six points, but Lowry hung tough and closed within basket after buckets by Emily Backus and Petersen. The Lady Bucks had an opportunity to go back in front but missed four straight free throws.
With both teams in foul trouble, Lowry took the lead at 37-36 with 2:45 to play after a pair of free throws by Kuskie. That proved to be the final points for the Lady Bucks.
Truckee went back up by a point the next time down the floor and Lowry nearly returned the favor, but Petersen’s layup went all the way in and back out of the basket with less than a minute to play.
Lowry was force to foul twice quickly to put Truckee on the free throw line. The strategy worked, as the Wolverines missed the free throw with 42 seconds to go. 
The Lady Bucks were unable to take the lead on the next possession, leading to another foul. Truckee made 1-of-2 free throws with 19.9 seconds to play. 
After a timeout, the Lady Bucks were not able to get off a shot, turning the ball over near its bench after an errant pass. 
Lowry fouled one last time and Truckee missed the free throw with 4.9 seconds to go. After a Lowry timeout, the Lady Bucks got the ball up the floor, but a 3-pointer at the buzzer by Maestrejuan bounced of the rim.
Kuskie paced Lowry with 10 points, while Maestrejuan and Petersen had nine each and Backus eight.

Lowry routs
North Valleys
It was a much easier Friday night, as Lowry took on North Valleys and cruised to a 57-15 win. Backus and Maestrejuan outscored the Panthers by themselves with 24 and 12 points, respectively.
The Lady Bucks opened up a 23-1 lead in the first quarter, when the Panthers made its first field goal at the buzzer, a 3-pointer from 25 feet away.
“It was a good chance to change up the lineups a little bit,” Thurmond said. “We just rotated five girls in and five girls out in the second half.”
North Valleys did not score more than five points in any quarter and Lowry outscored the Reno school 16-2 in the fourth quarter.
Kuskie add five points, Hannah Whitted three and Shanae Smith, Carly Capellen, Emika Viscarra and Petersen each had two points. 
Lowry starts a three-game road trip in Elko on Friday at 6 p.m. and will be in Spring Creek on Saturday for a 1 p.m. tip. The Lady Bucks travel to Fallon on Tuesday, Feb. 11, for the final road game of the regular season.