BHS, IHS sports results from Dec. 14-21
Written by: Joel Priest
Boys show improvements at FCC
Hardy earns All-Tourney
By Joel Priest
And though the Monticella Buckaroos regrouped to win 62-56 in overtime, they needed to dig deep into their bag of tricksâ€”including junior Austin Maloyâ€™s inbounds pass underneath the basket to himself, off unsuspecting Panther post Briston Walkerâ€™s backâ€”in full view of their waiting enemy: Bayfield, searching for a third wind after seeing their own fantastic late rally versus the Panthers come up short on Day 1.
â€œMonticello is a very tough team. They are extremely athletic, extremely strong, and our kids didnâ€™t have a bit of back-down,â€ stated BHS boss Bill Hesford. â€œDidnâ€™t seem intimidated, got out there and played their gameâ€”and itâ€™s the best game weâ€™ve played.â€
â€œAfter that overtime winâ€¦it was hard to come out and play because we had dead legs, and they were fresh. They came out fast, hit some threes,â€ said Monticello senior Gunnar Hollingsworth, whoâ€™d put up 24 against M-CHS, â€œbut we just stuck through itâ€¦like, not get too down and just push through.â€
There really was no more fitting way to start for the Wolverines; having been greeted in the Classicâ€™s first clash by ten Miyamura treys [the Pats prevailed 63-39, with BHS coming only as close as 19-14], and then hit with five more in a 65-55 loss to the locals, revenge was ready to be dealt.
But in proper FCC irony, it wasnâ€™t point guard Joey Webb draining Bayfieldâ€™s first triple, nor starting two Nevin Lister, nor three Eirik Kins, nor even bench threats Geoff Pope and Trevor Gabbard.
â€œItâ€™s funny,â€ said Hesford. â€œWeâ€™ve runâ€¦last two games we ran an opening play for Preston, to get a three for him. And he missed on both. We ran a different play [against Monticello], and the play didnâ€™t goâ€”and Preston got an open three and made it. Then he made one on the next trip, and about two trips later; he was feeling pretty good there.â€
â€œWe just decided to get it started early, and hit itâ€¦hit itâ€¦hit it!â€ recalled 6â€™6â€ center Preston Hardy. â€œSo it was fun; there were good passes and everythingâ€”we scored that first quarter. It helps.â€
Having trailed 4Aâ€™s Miyamura and M-CHS after one frame by respective counts of 19-8 and 14-8, the scoreboard showing a 16-15 advantageâ€”fueled by Hardyâ€™s three 3â€™s and one by Webbâ€”was a major boon to BHSâ€™ confidence.
But with Hollingsworth equaling his four first-quarter points in the second, and 6â€™4â€ senior Jake Duncanâ€”trying to figure out how to hawk Hardyâ€”also netting two late buckets, Monticello pulled even at 26-26 at halftime, having trailed by as much as 23-18 with 3:50 left.
â€œWeâ€™ve been talking a lot about getting more shots on the rim while still being patient, and we finally saw thatâ€”the kind of offensive plan we need to run,â€ Hesford said. â€œWe need 16 to 20 a quarter.â€
MHS skipper Tony Esplin, whoâ€™d led his schoolâ€™s volleyball team to a second straight state championship in the fall, had a simpler message to tell his troops in the locker room.
â€œHe was saying that now our legsâ€”like, both of usâ€”have some fatigue,â€ recalled Hollingsworth, â€œand theyâ€™re not going to be as fresh. So we could go deeper into our bench, and just keep working.â€
And sure enough, the Buckaroos took a 33-31 lead into the fourth on a late Nash Freestone FT, but Webb came up huge defensively with a block of Sheldon Blackâ€™s buzzer-beating attempt from midcourt. Black and Tanner Eardley each scored eight as reserves, and MHSâ€™ bench totaled 18 points to BHSâ€™ nine.
Hollingsworth (10 points) began the fourth with a reverse layup, but Wolverine Tyler Kerr (9) countered with two free throws. Hardy (16), held scoreless in the third, managed a hoop and two makes from the stripe in the fourth, but Duncan worked the paint with veteran prowess, and proved the difference.
Maloy (18 points versus M-CHS, 7 vs. BHS) and Black each sank a crucial three to help gain separation, but Duncan (7 points, 5 fouls vs. M-CHS) poured in 11 of his game-high 19, including a rim-less â€˜dunkâ€™ with 0:30 remaining to give MHS a 51-43 lead en route to a 55-43 final.
â€œThatâ€™s what we doâ€”we like to get it outside and just look in, post up a lot,â€ said Hollingsworth, an All-Tournament choice (with Maloy) from the champsâ€™ roster. â€œIt was originally our game plan to get it inside; we know theyâ€™ve got that big guy, butâ€¦. We just do what we do.â€
â€œCoach, before the game, tells us â€˜Donâ€™t play the other team, play ourselves,â€™â€ said Hardy, also an All-Tourney pick. â€œItâ€™s our game plan every time; we donâ€™t worry about what the other team does. So thatâ€™s what weâ€™re working forâ€”go out and try to play our game.â€
Pope finished with six points, giving him 23 in the three games. Kins had four, giving him 13, and Kerr totaled 29. Including a 17-point, 14-rebound effort against M-CHS, Hardy racked up 39 points, and Webb amassed 15. Reserve Dillon Hoselton even managed to score in all contests, totaling five points.
â€œThe thing about our team right now is that weâ€™ve gotten better every time weâ€™ve stepped on the court,â€ said Hesford. â€œThe wins are going to come; itâ€™ll be nice when that first one comes. But weâ€™ve made a ton of progress fromâ€¦when we came out against Durango.â€
â€œWe are short one of our big guys, and we felt that against Cortez more than anybody else. So hopefully when we see them again in January,â€ he continued, â€œat our place weâ€™ll have a different result. But Iâ€™m pretty pleased with the tournament; three good games, helping us get ready for the IML.â€
FOUR CORNERS CLASSIC RESULTS: 1.Monticello 3-0 (now 6-1 overall), 2.Montezuma-Cortez 2-1 (2-4), 3.Miyamura 1-2 (4-4), 4.BAYFIELD 0-3 (0-4).
ADDITIONAL ALL-TOURNEY PICKS: Jared Meese, Miyamura junior forward; Brackin Whiteskunk (59 total points), M-CHS junior guard.
LAST-MINUTE SHOPPING: Bayfieldâ€™s road game Thursday nightâ€”their last before the Christmas breakâ€”at 4A Piedra Vista (3-7) in Farmington, N.M., was finished after the Times went to print.
Mickey IHSâ€™ lone R-R placer
By Joel Priest
Ninth place out of nine surely had the expected lumps in the win/loss column.
Ignacio sophomore Blaine Mickey, however, chose to inflict more than he sustained at last Fridayâ€™s Bloomfield (N.M.) Round-Robin Invitational. Going 3-1 on the day, he managed to out-score 4A Kirtland (N.M.) Centralâ€™s Alex Kamae in the final phase to save third place at 160 pounds, but ultimately ended up as the Bobcatsâ€™ only placer out ofâ€”you guessed itâ€”nine competing.
Mickey started his day with a pin of BHSâ€™ Sheldon Begaii, but then had the favor returned by 4A Gallup (N.M.) Miyamuraâ€™s Dennis Dâ€™Orazio in the second pool-match round. But a pin of 4A Aztec (N.M.) Tiger Ethan Reimers got him back on track towards earning IHS seven of its 32 team points.
With three Skyhawks placing fourth and oneâ€”Landon Yazzie at 220â€”second, Newcomb, N.M. (classified as a 1A-3A squad by the NMAA), took eighth with 46 points, and 4A Gallup, N.M., was seventh with 49.
Javan Webb went 1-2 at 195, and heavyweight Josh Gallegos did likewise, as did Ruben Velasquez at 152. Christian Knoll (0-3 at 170) was IHSâ€™ only upper-weight grappler not to earn a victory.
In the lower ranks, Taylor Smith went 1-2 at 120 pounds, defeating MHSâ€™ Taylor Cambridge in his final pool-round contest. At 126, Mathew Powell went 0-3 against a rugged pool featuring 4A Farmington (N.M.) Piedra Vistaâ€™s Ryan Ruybalid and 4A Bloomfieldâ€™s Troy Rightmire.
David Cooper went down by pin right off the bat at 132, courtesy Aztecâ€™s Robert Escojeda, and was pinned twice moreâ€”ousted by 3A Bayfieldâ€™s Allec Rodriguez. And at 138 Trever Sivers was promptly pinned by MHSâ€™ Alias Starkovich, then by eventual champ Samuel Chee of KC, and was eliminated by Bloomfieldâ€™s Jaelynn Tucker.
ROUND-ROBIN OUTSTANDING WRESTLERS: Lower Weightsâ€”Escojeda; Middleâ€”Ryan Rino (152), PV; Upperâ€”Adam Lucero (170), AZT.
BHS girls playing this weekend at Lady Scorp Invite
By Joel Priest
After a long wait itâ€™s finally back to business for the Lady Wolverines, as theyâ€™ll participate in this weekendâ€™s Webb Toyota/Farmington (N.M.) Lady Scorpion Invitational at FHS.
Unfortunately for readers, Bayfield began last night with a 7 p.m. tipâ€”after 3A Shiprock, N.M., and 4A Mead, Colo., started things at 5:30â€”against the tourney hosts, and results were unavailable before the Times went to print. But in the eventâ€™s round-robin format, BHSâ€™ next opponent was already known:
Tonight Bayfield will battle SHS in the 5:30 contest, with Mead then meeting Farmington. Saturdayâ€™s schedule pits BHS (1-2 prior to the event) and MHS (3-2) in the noon game, with the San Juan County clash between SHS (6-1 coming in) and FHS (1-4) following at 2 p.m.
Placings will be determined by: 1.Wins/losses; 2.Head-to-head; 3.Point Differential (15 points maximum); 4.Points allowed. There will also be eight All-Tourney awards to be earned, as well as an overall MVP selection.
Grapplers make gains in Bloomfield
Wolverines with three runners-up
By Joel Priest
Round- and round-, and round-robin theyâ€™d go.
How it all would stop, wellâ€¦most filling Bobcat Arenaâ€™s bleachers seemed to already know: Returning several keys from last seasonâ€™s State-best squadâ€”with a reigning Colorado champ [2A Del Norteâ€™s Jacob Palmgren] also now in the foldâ€”Piedra Vista was primed to go big against a small field.
And amongst those facing the Panthersâ€™ paws last Friday happened to be the Bayfield Wolverines.
Second-place finishes by Joe Zink at 145 pounds, Colter McMenimen at 126 and Michael Goodman at 182 fueled BHSâ€™ 116.5-point total at the Bloomfield Round-Robin Invitational, but itâ€”along with those of New Mexico 4A powers Aztec (151.5) and Bloomfield (176)â€”was nowhere near to being near the Farmington-based forceâ€™s massive haul of 356.
Bayfield finished fifth, with Kirtland Centralâ€”second to last as a team at last seasonâ€™s NMAA Class 4A State Championshipsâ€”just ahead in fourth with 119.5 points. Sixth-place 4A Miyamura managed just 71, but gained a morale-booster for the season by outdoing their city rivals Gallup (49).
Goodman went 3-1 on the day, losing only to PVâ€™s John Ellsaesser by pin in the final, and Zink posted an identical markâ€”losing 9-3 at the end to PVâ€™s Dillon Strunk. McMenimen was also 3-1, dropping a high-scoring 20-11 decision for the medal to PVâ€™s Ryan Ruybalid.
Also for Bayfield, heavyweight Matt Eckstein overcame AHSâ€™ Monty Gomezâ€™s early pin to save third place (also going 3-1 overall) win a pin of his own against GHSâ€™ Christopher Chee. Allec Rodriguez was 3-1 at 132â€”including a narrow loss to AHSâ€™ Robert Escojeda, brother of graduated 4A champ Rio (the classificationâ€™s winning-est in 2011-12, going 52-1 at 138)â€”but pinned his KC opponent for third.
Tyler Beebe took fourth at 120, going 2-2 with a final-round loss to Bobcat Donny Trujillo.
Six more wrestlers took part for the Wolverines, including Drake Rhodes who went 1-2 at 138, ousted from placingâ€”the Round-Robin recorded the top four in each weightâ€”by PVâ€™s Wyatt Weaver in the pool round. Myles Popke was pinned by AHSâ€™ Justis Francisco and then by PVâ€™s Ryan Rino at 152, but received a â€˜byeâ€™ in his final pool match.
James Youngâ€™s pool-opener at 160 pounds ended underneath a pin by PVâ€™s Wyatt Hardy, and he was eliminated from contention in similar fashion by KCâ€™s Alex Kamae before also receiving a free pass. Jon Robertsâ€™ chances at 170 took a hit in his second pool match with a loss to AHSâ€™ Adam Lucero, and were then doused with a forfeit loss to PVâ€™s Joseph Kerr.
Dominique Brittain lost right away to PVâ€™s Zach Ahlgrim at 195, and then fell to AHSâ€™ Orien Israel and 2A Ignacioâ€™s Javan Webb, and 220-pounder Matt Cerdas also went 0-3 after losses to PVâ€™s Christian Acosta, Bloomfieldâ€™s Orin Kennedy (State runner-up heavyweight last season), and Miyamuraâ€™s Brandon Gray.
The Wolverines end the â€˜old yearâ€™ at tomorrowâ€™s Piedra Vista Invitational, set to start at 10 a.m. against a field including not only the Panthers but also talented N.M. 4Aâ€™s Los Lunas, Santa Fe, and Belen.
BLOOMFIELD ROUND-ROBIN CHAMPIONS: 106â€”Lawrence Sandoval, PV; 113â€”Phillip Archuleta, PV; 120â€”Palmgren, PV; 126â€”Ruybalid, PV; 132â€”Escojeda, AZT; 138â€”Samuel Chee, KC; 145â€”Strunk, PV; 152â€”Rino, PV; 160â€”Hardy, PV; 170â€”Lucero, AZT; 182â€”Ellsaesser, PV; 195â€”Ahlgrim, PV; 220â€”Acosta, PV; Hwtâ€”Kason Wilkinson, PV.