T-wolves shoot down Nevada Union, close in on title

Woodcreek 15 points better than Miners
By: Kurt Johnson, The Press Tribune
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The Nevada Union High boys basketball team managed to trade punches with Woodcreek for about eight minutes Wednesday night, but it could not make it last. The Timberwolves led by just a single point over the sixth-place team in the Sierra Foothill League after the first period, but started the second stanza on a 10-2 run on their way to a 69-54 win. The victory puts Woodcreek on the doorstep of the SFL title with one game to play. The first quarter belonged to Woodcreek guard Ryan Milat and Miner forward Colin Lee. Milat drained a trio of 3-pointers to answer Lee’s 12-point outburst out of the gate. Nik Stathopoulos provided a nice complement to Milat with six in the stanza. An 18-point Woodcreek second quarter featured seven more points from Milat, who scored all of his 16 before intermission. Nik Milani and Mike Kurtz each tossed in four in the period, but it was the Timberwolves’ defense that told the story. With a combination of Stathopoulos, Milani and Derek Anganes making his life difficult, Lee was held scoreless in the second, and his team managed to post just seven points. Behind a pair of threes by Chris Biertuempfel and nine more points from Lee, the Miners made a bit of a run in the third period, but Milani scored 10 in the quarter, including two treys of his own as Woodcreek survived the surge and expanded the margin to 59-43. From there, the contest belonged to the Timberwolves and they cruised to a 15-point final margin of victory. Lee led all scorers with 21 points, but he was the only Miner on double figures as Daniel Pettinato and Cole Britton each scored eight. Milani led the way for Woodcreek with 20 points and five boards, with Milat’s 16 as the second-best number. Stathopoulos scored 10, grabbed six rebounds and dished out four assists and Kurtz pulled down 11 rebounds to go with his eight-point night. The win puts Woodcreek (9-2 in the SFL, 21-5 overall) in position to win the league title and clinch the No. 3 spot in the Sac-Joaquin Section Division II playoffs if it can beat Granite Bay (4-7, 15-10) on senior night Friday night at Woodcreek.