Sparks shut down South Tahoe's leading scorer Peter Pielaet-Strayer to just eight points. The Vikings star had been averaging a double-double through the Lake school's first 11 games. He never got on track against Sparks, managing just three points in the first half, without a field goal.
“He's their best player and a good player,” Sparks coach Mike Jones said. “To hold him to eight, I feel pretty good about that ... We really implemented the game plan pretty well.”
Sparks took a 13-10 lead at the first quarter's conclusion, but South Tahoe rallied to grab a 22-20 lead. The advantage was short-lived. The visiting Railroaders responded and reeled off the final seven points before the break to hold a 27-24 edge at halftime.
A Martin Jordan 3-pointer and fast-break layup by Henry Banks keyed a late third-quarter Sparks spurt. The Railroaders held South Tahoe (6-6, 0-1) to just four points in the third and held a 37-28 lead with
three periods complete.
Sparks (6-3, 1-0) extended its lead to as much as 15 points in the fourth and was never really threatened down the stretch en route to the 11-point win.
“We started a little sluggish,” Jones said. “The altitude I think bothered us a little bit early but the kids got used to it and we started playing much better in the second half. We executed a lot better today, much better than we did Tuesday (in the loss to Dayton).”
The loss was South Tahoe's first at home this season and snapped the Vikings’ modest three-game winning streak.
Erik Garcia and Jordan scored 15 and 13 points to lead Sparks offensively. No South Tahoe player put up double digits in the scoring column.
Sparks will go to Fernley for a non-league game Tuesday at 7:30 p.m.
In a battle of winless squads, South Tahoe used a key third-quarter advantage to capture a 25-21 home win.
Sparks led 12-11 at halftime, but South Tahoe outscored the visiting Railroaders 9-1 in the third period. South Tahoe forged ahead by as much as 11 points early in the fourth, but Sparks had some fight left.
The Railroaders got two free throws from Kristy Martinez to get within three, 24-21, with a minute to go in the game. Sparks did get off two 3-point shots, either of which could have tied the game, but both missed the mark.
Mel Sabac made 1 of 2 foul shots for the host Vikings with 14 seconds showing on the game clock to account for the final four-point margin.
Sparks High's Krystal Parker scored 12 points to lead all scorers.