Two of Nevada's top basketball teams met in a rematch of last year's state championship on Tuesday at Reed, and the defending champion Raiders came out on top, 55-50 over Reno.
"I expected a back and forth battle," Reed coach Sara Ramirez said. "Reno High is good. They have good players. It's like I told my girls in practice, we're not going to win it in the first, second or third quarter. It's going to be in the fourth and that's what happened."
The game featured several momentum swings and lead changes.
In the first quarter, the Huskies defense held Reed star Gabby Williams in check and their effort translated into a three-point lead going into the second. The first was the only quarter Williams wouldn't dominate.
In the second, she took over by scoring all 13 of the Raider's points and outscoring the entire Reno team. She got into the paint and hit several running floaters, giving the Raiders to a two-point lead going into the half.
Reed jumped out to a nine-point lead by going on a 9-2 scoring run to open up the second half. Sensing the game was beginning to slip away, Reno coach Shane Foster called a timeout.
Foster's message during the timeout prompted his girls to go on a run of their own.
The Huskies scored 12 of the next 14 points to take a one-point lead into the final quarter.
"We just talked about getting it back one defensive stop at a time," Foster said. "We got down nine and we got it right back."
In the fourth quarter, Williams went down with cramps in both legs and was in visible pain as she ran up and down the floor. Her teammates stepped up to keep the game close until Williams dropped a dagger from behind the 3-point line that gave Reed a lead it wouldn't relinquish.
"The other girls had to step up. It was good for us because the other girls gained confidence." Ramirez said.
Williams said her teammates' performance down the stretch led to the win. She was slowed by the injury, but said she never considered coming out.
After the game, she had to be carried off the court by her coaches.
"I felt like there were two sandbags on my feet as I was jumping. There's nothing you can do. You have to keep playing." Williams said.
Williams led the way for Reed by dropping 32 points. She was able to get just about any shot she wanted and her fourth quarter 3-pointer and subsequent free throws put the game on ice for Reed.
Gigi Hascheff led Reno with 15 points.
The team fell to 2-1 after dropping a game that represented their first real challenge of the young season.
"We could have shot a little better," Foster said. "We shot 15 for 52 tonight, and down the stretch we made crucial turnovers."
The Raiders won all four meetings between the two last year, and have taken the first of two this season.