Rocklin turns tables on Folsom; Oakmont holds off Whitney

Thunder out gun ‘Dogs
By: Jim Linsdau, Sports Editor
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The Rocklin Holiday Tournament again featured some outstanding competition Friday night as each of the three games was decided by four points or less.

Rocklin took part in a thriller facing Folsom in the closing game of Friday’s contests. The two clubs were amazingly well matched in spite of the Thunders’ 18-point loss to the Bulldogs last week. This time, Rocklin got the victory 61-57.

Thunder head coach Casey Cutts outdueled Folsom head coach Mike Wall in player strategy and came out on top in spite of the Bulldogs’ excellent 3-point shooting. Alternating his centers Hayden Cook and Spencer Gregg, Cutts kept Cook out of foul trouble and helped offset the play of Folsom’s Edwin Olympio.

Rocklin went hard to the offensive boards for second and third shots and it paid off as the Thunder out-rebounded the ‘Dogs by a wide margin. Although Folsom went to the foul line twice as many times as the Rocklin it wasn’t enough to make the difference.

A key player matchup was between the two 24s, Olympio and Devin Moss. Although Olympio worked hard to keep his club in the game with nine points in the third quarter, he managed only 12 for the contest.

Moss was quiet until the second half when he poured in 11 of his 16 points, high for the game. He also took down eight boards on the night, five in the fourth quarter.

Gavin Smith was high-point for Folsom with 13, he was perfect in the second half with three 3’s and 2-2 at the line.

Cook had 12 points for Rocklin, many on second chances. Jake Faulkner and Taylor Cherry had eight apiece for the Thunder.

Cutts will again have to use player strategy Saturday to counter the height advantage Weston Ranch can put on the floor.

Game 2

Weston Ranch and Inderkum provided the warm up thriller for the Rocklin vs. Folsom game by literally battling down to the wire before the Tigers claimed the win 80-79.

The Cougars took the early lead, but Inderkum came back to knot the contest 39-39 at halftime. Weston Ranch scored 22 points in the second period, the Tigers 25.

Tied 54-54 at the end of three periods, neither team held a lead of more than three points for the full eight minutes.

Although Inderkum’s Terrance Whitt led the Tigers with 23 points, perhaps the hero of the game came from an unlikely candidate – LD Dhaliwal. He was inserted into the game when the Cougars were forced to foul in the closing seconds of the game.

Going 4-4 from the foul line, Dhaliwal put Inderkum up by four with 14 seconds remaining in the game and did it again with six seconds on the clock.

Weston Ranch did come back with a dramatic 3-pointer as the buzzer went off but it was too little too late.

Game 1

Whitney struggled in the early going against Oakmont to open the day’s action but fought back to give the Vikings a bit of a scare in the closing stanza before falling 59-54.

With the Wildcats Matt Gruber out with an injured ankle, Oakmont was able to dominate the backboards. The Vikes raced out to a 19-5 lead in the first quarter but Whitney head coach Matthew Rickabaugh’s club worked its way back into the contest to trail 34-23 at the half.

Connecting on only one trey in the first two quarters, the ‘Cats began to penetrate and force Oakmont to foul. Whitney shot 5-7 from the line and 6-12 from the floor in period two to out-score the Vikes 18-15.

Oakmont kept its lead through the third quarter and led 48-37 at the end of three. That’s when the Wildcats’ Nolan Eger went to work.

The senior got off seven shots in the second half and was perfect in the final eight minutes. He was 1-1 from the floor, had three rebounds and shot 8-8 from the free-throw line.

Eger led Whitney with 19 points. He finished the night 11-11 from the line.

However, the ‘Cats had no answer for Oakmont’s Isaac Thornton who led all scoring with 26 points. When he wasn’t scoring, the Vikings’ center drew multiple double teams that allowed the Roseville club to find the open man.

Rocklin Holiday Tournament

Boys Basketball

Friday’s Results

Oakmont 59, Whitney 54

Inderkum 80, Weston Ranch 79

Rocklin 61, Folsom 57

Saturday’s Games

2 p.m. – Whitney vs. Inderkum

3:30 p.m. – Folsom vs. Oakmont

5 p.m. – Rocklin vs. Weston Ranch