Horsemen moved up via Friday night’s win over Pojoaque Valley, Demons by turning back Clovis Saturday night, and the Jaguars’ loss to Albuquerque Del
Norte dropped them in the standings
By Arnie Leshin
Leave it to the Taos boys winning four in a row and taking over the top spot in District 2-4A basketball. They are 6-1 in district, but right below them it’s bunched and that’s where St. Michael’s is.
Except the Horsemen (11-14) can clinch the runner-up spot for the district tournament by winning at West Las Vegas Friday night. The Dons (12-12) had been in second place, but three straight losses knocked them down to 3-3, same as cross town rival Las Vegas Robertson (9-15), with Pojoaque Valley (6-17) on the bottom at 0-6 and with nine defeats in a row.
St. Michael’s might have been up there on top with Taos, but the teams played twice, and both times the Tigers (15-10) won in double overtime.
But the Horsemen already have a victory over West Las Vegas, 50-48, in overtime, so another triumph over the Dons would bring second place and a chance to host the district semifinals, with the first place team to play host for the final. St. Michael’s disposed of Pojoaque, 66-50, Friday night to inch up in the standings.
West Las Vegas winds down with Tuesday’s game at the Elks and concludes with the game matching St. Michael’s at the Dons. As for Robertson, it is home Tuesday to Taos and at Pojoaque Friday.
Santa Fe High keeps hanging around in District 2-6A, with Saturday night’s 72-50 win over visiting Clovis putting it at 4-4 in district, which has the Demons in fourth place, but only a game behind 5-3 Albuquerque Manzano (13-9), who they face on the road Tuesday night. Then the Demons meet up Saturday at first place Albuquerque Eldorado (20-2), which is 8-0 in district.
It was the second time this season that Santa Fe High turned back the Wildcats (8-15), who are winless in eight district starts. Under head coach Zack Cole, the Demons had been on that win once, lose one, win one, lose one, before settling in with a loss, a win, a loss, a win.
They are also ahead of Albuquerque Sandia (8-14), which is, 1-8 in district after, and in second place at 7-2 and 15-7, is Albuquerque La Cueva.
In 2-5A, Capital is in the unfamiliar spot of third place. Usually it’s the Jaguars and Espanola Valley running one-two in this district, but the Sundevils (22-1) have already knocked off the Jags twice, and the setback to Albuquerque Del Norte (10-13) put Capital at 3-3, with Del Norte at 5-1 and the Sundevils at 6-0.
While Espanola has won seven-straight, the Knights can boast of three wins in a row, while Capital has dropped its last two, and cellar dweller Los Alamos has lost all six district starts and is 9-15 overall. Right ahead of the Hilltoppers is Albuquerque Academy (6-17), which is 2-5 in district.
Del Norte still has a contest at home versus the Chargers and finishes up at Espanola Saturday night. The Knights have been a pest to the Sundevils, losing by 7 and 11 last season before eliminating Espanola, 77-67, in the state tournament. After then getting past Belen, Del Norte was ousted by eventual winner Roswell in the semis.
In 3-3A, first place Pecos has won district for the third straight time, owns an 8-game winning streak and is 21-3 after overwhelming outmanned Desert Academy, 88-15. In a non district game, undefeated Texico turned back 3A opponent Santa Rosa, 55-39.
In 2-3A, Santa Fe Prep remains in first place at 4-0 and it advanced to 12-6 overall with its fourth straight triumph by winning over Monte del Sol, 66-55, to drop the Dragons to 13-11 overall and 1-3 in district. In 3-3A, it was Raton over Tierra Encantada, 46-34. In 2-6A, it was Eldorado dominating Manzano, 77-59.
And down the stretch they come. There’s the district tournament followed by the state tournament, with the first-place regular-season district champion getting an automatic berth at state.