Jerry Brown can’t remember the last time the Golden Valley Conference was this deep with talent from top to bottom.
The Knights are the lone unranked team in the State’s Coaches Association North Regional Poll. And Saturday’s 91-71 home loss to No. 18 College of the Redwoods didn’t help Shasta College’s chances of cracking the top 15 any time soon.
Three weeks ago, though, it was a completely different story. Coverage provided by Sierra Pacific Industries.
“Some of the teams we beat are in first place in their conferences,” said Brown, who guided the Knights to a 12-5 start before GVC play. “This year is a freaky league. I’ve been coaching 26 years, 28 total and this is the first time I’ve seen five teams ranked in the top (15).
“There are no weak holes in the schedule.”
Shasta (0-4 GVC, 12-9) suffered its fourth straight loss and is still searching for its first GVC win. An entire roster of freshmen isn’t helping with the learning curve despite starting the year well. The little lapses from lack of experience are starting to catch up to the Knights.
“Freshmen make freshmen mistakes,” Brown said. “They do some things really well but we can’t maintain it. We just have no room for error right now.”
One of the bright spots among the Knights is freshman Jenna Wallace, a Foothill High grad. Wallace entered Saturday’s game fourth in the state in scoring and added a career-high 32 points to that total.
“You can see how hard she plays in games, she plays just as hard in practice,” Brown said. “Anything we do she’s always first. Up and down the floor running, she can play inside or outside she doesn’t care.”
Wallace did everything she could to keep Shasta in it early on, trading buckets with the opposite No. 11 jersey in Ashley Quigley. Redwoods (4-1 GVC, 16-4) led 29-22 after the opening period with Wallace and Megan Collins combining for 19 of the Knights’ 22 points, hitting a 3-pointer at the end of the quarter.
But Redwoods buried back-to-back 3s to fuel a 10-0 run to start the second and Shasta went nearly seven minutes with only one field goal. In that time, the Knights saw the deficit grow to 17 and later to 23 in the half before going into the break trailing 53-21.
Shasta twice cut the lead to 16 in the third quarter and reached 14 late in the fourth on Tessa Thomsen’s runner in the lane. Wallace buried three of her four 3s in the final period.
But Redwoods, which hit 16 3-pointers in the game, used an 8-0 run, including a 3 from Rhea McCoy to put the game completely out of reach. Quigley finished with 22 points to lead the Corsairs, who had four players in double figures.
After Wallace’s 32, Collins contributed 16 points, Kali Cummings with 10 points and Riley Wallen with seven points.
Shasta has back-to-back road games at Lassen (Wednesday) and Feather River Saturday before hosting Butte on Feb. 5.
Redwoods (4-1 GVC, 16-4): Quigley 22, Ortega-Miranda 19, Green 14, Dickey 12, Horton 8, Northern 7, Kartes 3, McCoy 3, Arnold 3.
Shasta (0-4 GVC, 12-9): Wallace 32, Collins 16, Cummings 10, Wallen 7, Thomsen 4, Larson 2.
3-pointers—Redwoods 16: Quigley (6), Ortega-Miranda (3), Dickey (3), Arnold (1), Kartes (1), McCoy (1), Northern (1); Shasta 8: Wallace (4), Cummings (2), Collins (1), Wallen (1).
Team GVC, Overall
Redwoods 4-1, 16-4
Butte 3-1, 17-5
Siskiyous 2-1, 14-7
Feather River 2-2, 11-9
Lassen 1-3, 16-6
Shasta 0-4, 12-9
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