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Pojoaque beats Hope Christian in overtime

January 4, 2019

The Pojoaque Valley Elkettes got a taste of big-time Class 4A action Thursday night.

They went toe-to-toe with a savvy Albuquerque Hope Christian team, and needed overtime to pull out a 62-60 nondistrict win in Albuquerque to improve to 11-0.

Pojoaque trailed 33-30 at the half, but it was tied up at 57-all at the end of regulation. It took a 3-pointer by Ashten Martinez to give the Elkettes a two-point lead and the Lady Huskies missed a pair of free throws down the stretch to help the visitors hold on for the win. Seledon Martinez, Pojoaque’s head coach, said it was the first time in a long time a team coached by him beat Hope Christian, and that extended to his tenure at McCurdy School in the early 2000s.

“It was like a heavyweight fight — one haymaker after another on both sides,” Martinez said. “We’re learning how to be long in 4A ball.”

Taylor Roybal led Pojoaque with 17 points, while Martinez added 14 and Toni Aquino 13. Hope Christian (3-6) had Savanna Lewis lead the way with 18 points, and Hayley Valencia added 16.

Los Alamos 47, Belen 31

As the guards go, so go the Lady Hilltoppers.

They were in strong form on the road against the Lady Eagles, as guards Alex Calderon and Michaela Gonzales each had nine points to augment an 11-point effort from senior wing Natalie Gallegos. Los Alamos (6-8) only led 17-15 at the half, but the offense got on track with 30 points after the break.

Lady Carter, Lady Hilltoppers head coach, said he and his coaching staff try to put his guards in position to improve through practice and in games, knowing that it was a weakness for the program the past couple of years.

“We are definitely putting things on their shoulders, so that they’re in sync with their wings,” Carter said. “We just focus on the skills — dribbling with your eyes up, create space, having timing with your wings.”

Syndey Valdez led Belen (6-6) with 11 points.

Rio Rancho 42, Capital 39

The Lady Jaguars (4-5) tried to rally from a 34-26 deficit heading into the fourth quarter, but fell short in Rio Rancho. Capital outscored the Lady Rams 13-8 in the final quarter.

Ethena Silva had 14 points, as six of Capital’s eight players who suited up scored. Laura Gutierrez had 16 points to lead Rio Rancho, and Julia Chavez added 13.

Rio Rancho Cleveland 61, Santa Fe High 40

The Demonettes (5-8) fell behind 15-5 after a quarter against the Storm, and never could get closer in a nondistrict game in Rio Rancho. Cleveland led 27-15 at the half, and 43-28 after three quarters before outscoring Santa Fe High 18-12 in the fourth.

Alexis Espinosa led Santa Fe High (5-7) with 10 points, and Angie Perez chipped in with eight.

Hatch Valley 66, St. Michael’s 47

One quarter made all the difference in the opening-round game of the Lady Sundevil Invitational at Albuquerque Sandia Prep, and it just happened to be the opening one. The Lady Bears (11-1) outscored the Lady Horsemen 26-7 thanks in part to three 3-pointers by Makayla Villegas and never looked back to advance to the semifinals.

St. Michael’s 5-6) trailed 38-20 at the half, and 53-34 after three.

Taryn Trujillo led Hatch Valley with 25 points, Madison Williams had 12 and Villegas 11. Carisa Padilla carried the Lady Horsemen (6-7) with 19 points, while Joelyn Fernandez added 13.

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