Courtesy photo
Mineral County’s Tony Dominguez drives to the hoop during the Serpent Classic last week in Hawthorne. The Serpents finished with a 4-1 record.

The Mineral County High boys basketball team opened up the season last week and played its toughest schedule yet in the 15th annual Serpent Classic. All their opponents were 1A or 3A teams.

The defending state champions opened up with the Longhorns from Battle Mountain on Thursday. The Serpents got off to a slow start but turned it on in the second half and won the game 48-32. Robert McFalls led the Serpents with 20 points. Tony Dominguez and Seth Bozzi had seven rebounds each and Damien Montoya had six assists. Eight Serpents were in the scoring column.

On Friday, the Mineral County boys beat White Pine 66-28. Leading scorers were McFalls with 17 and Vic Montoya with 11. Damien Montoya and Alex Palacious chipped in with eight points each. Devon Davis finished with six rebounds along with nine other Serpents who were in the rebound column.

In the evening game Friday, the Serpents had a match up with Lovelock. It was a tough night for the Serpents as shots were not falling and they were two steps slow on defense all game. The Mustangs had a seven point lead at half. Lovelock outscored the Serpents by 12 in the second half to win 57-38. McFalls had 20 points and Davis added eight points and nine boards.

In Saturday’s games the Serpents bounced back from their first loss by defeating a tough Bishop team 62-59. The boys were down 35-30 at half but went to a 3-2 zone that slowed the Broncos down and the Serpents took the lead with five minutes left and hung on to win. McFalls was high with 16 points; Dominguez added 13 points and Montoya added 10. Four Serpents were taking care of the glass, as Davis and Dominguez had seven rebounds each. McFalls and Montoya pulled down six rebounds each. It was a very physical game and our boys responded to the challenge.

In the final game of the night, the Serpents faced the Yerington Lions. The Serpents were up to the task as they downed their upper division rival 70-51. The boys were steady as they built a nine point lead at half-time. The defense held strong in the second half as they increased their lead and controlled the game. Ten Serpents made it into the scoring column. McFalls led the scoring with 23 points. Davis had 11 points, Montoya had nine and Dominguez added seven.

The Serpents will played a non-conference game on Tuesday, and will open conference play on Dec. 16, at home against Pyramid Lake.