The final stretch of games before the holiday break saw both the Warriors and Lady Warriors squads drop their South Yosemite League openers last week before embarking on an action-packed slate of non-league and tournament games.

First for the boy’s varsity squad it was an SYL opener against Independence in Tehachapi where the Falcons rode the long-distance shooting of guard Josh Codamon to hold off any Warriors advances in a 64-53 win. The Warriors trailed 6-0 early before getting their first score from Chris Garcia with 4:32 left in the first quarter. Garcia would score the first eight points for Tehachapi while Riley Thomson scored 10 in the second quarter alone as the Warriors trailed 32-24 at the half.

Tehachapi would pull within four points in the third quarter and force an Independence timeout. Codamon would then make back-to-back three pointers and Tehachapi went 0-for-3 from the field and turned the ball over, allowing the Falcons to extend the lead to 12 with just over two minutes left in the third. Tehachapi scored 22 points in the fourth quarter led by 11 from Adam Lamonoco including three three-pointers, but it wasn’t enough as Independence held on for the win. Garcia led Tehachapi with 20 points while Lomonaco and Thompson scored 11 for the Warriors. Codamon finished with 26 for the Falcons while Elijah Carter scored 18 for Independence.

Tehachapi rebounded the following evening at the Shafter Kiwanis Tournament with an 84-31 drubbing of Arvin in the first round of action. Head coach Moe Cramer said he was pleased with the response to the Independence loss with the performance against Arvin.

“I was worried for Arvin; they are a good team and have beat teams like Golden Valley who beat us, but I knew our boys were going to want to redeem themselves after the loss to Independence,” he said.

The Warriors then fell to Lompoc 70-65 on Thursday, but it would be their final loss of the tournament as Tehachapi went on to defeat Highland 57-47 and then won the consolation bracket with their first win over West High School since 2013.

“We held them to just 12 points in the 4th quarter, just shut them down,” Cramer said. “It was solid defense, not reaching, playing with our feet finally, very disciplined.”

Drew Bauer led Tehachapi with 17 points while Ryan Jones capped an impressive tournament performance with 16 for Tehachapi. Jones was selected to the All-Tournament Team for the Warriors. Tehachapi (8-6, 0-1 SYL) is now off for the holiday break and will not play another game until Jan. 9 when they host Bakersfield Christian in SYL play at 6:30 p.m.

Girl’s varsity

The Lady Warriors also started their SYL season with a 45-35 loss at Independence. Tehachapi struggled with 21 personal fouls and 20 turnovers in the loss. Much of the substitution patterns had to be shifted due to early foul trouble.

The Lady Warriors were led by Teagan Thurman’s 11 points on 4-of-13 from the field while Irey Sandholt added nine for Tehachapi in the loss.

They wouldn’t have to wait long though to get back into the win column as the next night Tehachapi hosted Frontier in a non-league matchup, recording a 53-50 while overcoming many of the same issues that plagued them the night before.

Tehachapi relied on sophomore Sara Heier late in the contest as once again many of the Tehachapi starters were in foul trouble. Heier tied the game at 48 in the fourth quarter after being fouled on a three-point attempt, after Frontier took the lead back on the next possession. Heier was fouled on a made layup and gave THS the 51-50 lead on the three-point play.

After Emily Williams hit a pair of free-throws to extend the lead to three, Heier stole a Frontier pass on the sideline to allow Tehachapi to take more time off the clock. Although the Lady Warriors turned the ball over on the next possession, the potential game-tying three fell short at the buzzer for the Titans.

Despite the victory Tehachapi turned the ball over 34 times and was charged with 26 personal fouls including five on Thurman, the team’s leading scorer, who was limited to just four points before fouling out. Heier led the Lady Warriors with 12 points while Mady Cotta added 11 and Sandholt scored nine.

Tehachapi continued their busy stretch the following day with a pair of losses in the East Bakersfield Tournament. First there was a 56-50 loss to East that saw Tehachapi limit turnovers to just 11 but shoot just 21-of-70 from the field (30 percent) and 6-of-25 from three-point range. The second came at the hands of Bakersfield High School, 35-27. Tehachapi’s offense struggled without a single player in double figures.

The Lady Warriors, however, would bounce back and secure a 48-46 win over West High School behind 16 points and 14 rebounds from Thurman and 11 points from junior Aleiyah Bryant. Tehachapi will play in the Arvin Varsity Tournament Dec. 27-29.

Junior Varsity Boy’s

Tehachapi fell to 0-1 in SYL play with a 47-38 loss to Independence. Brandon Neaderboamer led Tehachapi with 10 points while Bryson Sheen scored eight in the loss that sent the Braves to 5-4 this season.