Jaguars win, 50-44, benefiting rival Demons
Santa Fe High sure will leave a nice gift for the Capital Jaguars when the Demons are expected to show up in Edward A. Ortiz Memorial Gymnasium on Tuesday.
The Jaguars are the reason their crosstown rival will be there for a District 5-5A boys basketball playoff game. They beat district leader Albuquerque Manzano 50-44 at home to finish the regular season Friday night.
The win also helped Capital (18-8 overall, 5-5 in 5-5A) which tied for third place with Albuquerque High. It could help the Jaguars make it to the state tournament for the 18th straight season.
Capital scored the first seven points of the game and built a 14-4 lead after a quarter. The Monarchs (14-10, 6-4) cut the margin to 24-19 at the half, then 33-30 with 3 minutes left in the third quarter. The Jaguars pushed the lead back up to 37-32 entering the fourth. Capital then used an 8-2 spurt for a 45-34 lead with 3:15 left.
Manzano cut it to 45-40 with
90 seconds left before Capital iced it at the free-throw line.
The Jaguars will be the fourth seed for the 5-5A tournament, having lost the point-differential tie-breaker to the Bulldogs, and will play host to No. 5 Albuquerque Rio Grande at 7 p.m. Tuesday.
That game will be the bookend of a district doubleheader, as the Demons and the Monarchs play for the top seed in the tournament, tentatively set for 5:30 p.m. Tuesday.
Pecos 55, Texico 46
The Panthers overcame a sluggish opening quarter in which they trailed 11-6 in the 7-2A finale in Louis G. Sanchez Memorial Gymnasium. They outscored the Wolverines 32-15 over the next two quarters to take a 38-26 lead.
The win secured a fourth-straight district title for Pecos (22-3, 6-0) and the top seed for both the 7-2A tournament and the Class 2A State Tournament.
Xavier Padilla helped the Panthers with eight points in the second quarter, and he finished with a team-high 18 points.
Omar Dominguez came on strong in the third with seven of his 14 points as Pecos outscored Texico 17-7 in the quarter.
Luke Phipps led the Wolverines (20-6, 3-3) with 13 points, and Dalton Thatcher added 12.
Pojoaque Valley 49,
Los Alamos 34
Perhaps it was a matter of the Lady Hilltoppers wanting to win too much.
Or maybe it was that the Elkettes (22-4, 7-1) know how to straddle that fine line of playing intense versus playing tight in a 2-4A game that determined the district regular-season champion.
Whatever it was, Pojoaque had it, taking a 15-6 lead after a quarter before building it to 33-15 at the half. Even though Los Alamos (12-14, 6-2) cut the margin to 39-27 after three quarters, it just didn’t have enough energy to rally.
Head coach Lanse Carter said the Lady Hilltoppers had some good looks at the basket in the first quarter, but they didn’t fall and probably added to nervous tension that was building with them.
Carter credited his junior varsity coach Christina Weber for finding the right note to hit in the locker room after the game.
“When I talked to her, she said, ’I think we wanted it too much and we were our own worst enemy,” Carter said.
Pojoaque had a balanced attack, as Adrianna Quintana had 12 points, while Michael Martinez added 11 and Camille Cordova eight. Becca Green led Los Alamos with 19 points.
Santa Fe Indian School 52,
St. Michael’s 49
The Lady Horsemen finally got the offensive explosion they were looking for, as they outscored the Lady Braves 19-10 in the second quarter to take a 27-22 lead at the half. The lead was 42-41 after three, but SFIS outscored St. Michael’s 11-7 in the final quarter to take the 2-3A game in the Pueblo Pavilion.
The Lady Braves (22-4, 6-2) benefited from hitting 20 free throws.
“We shot 10 free throws and hit seven,” St. Michael’s head coach Martin Esquibel said. “That was the story of the game.”
Joelyn Fernandez had 18 points for St. Michael’s (11-14, 3-5) and Carisa Padilla scored 12.
The Lady Braves were led by Cameron Conners’ 12 points, while Marlena Yazzie and Leanna Lewis each had nine.
Texico 58, Pecos 32
The Lady Wolverines pounded away at the Lady Panthers’ interior defense, scoring 44 points in the paint.
There was no answer Pecos (19-5, 4-2) could provide as Texico (20-3, 6-0) secured the 7-2A title in Louis G. Sanchez Memorial Gymnasium.
“Our defense wasn’t there in the paint tonight,” Pecos head coach Ron Drake said. “They got a lot of layups and transition points. It was one of those games where we didn’t show up.”
Ashley Hill had 30 points to lead Texico, while Cassie Muller had 15 for the Lady Panthers.
Pecos will play host to the 7-2A semifinal on Feb. 27.