Shiprock had no problem beating Ignacio, Colo., on Friday, and now will play a familiar foe in its own tournament championship game.
The Lady Chieftains downed Ignacio 57-39 behind Shania Harry's team-high 20 points.
On the other side of the bracket, it was Shiprock's junior varsity team advancing to the tournament championship by beating Farmington's varsity unit 64-46.
"In practices, we all practice together from the start. We have fundamental stuff we go through together for a good two hours. We only break off into our own groups for the last 45 minutes or so, but we basically do everything the same," Shiprock head coach Larenson Henderson said of the girls' basketball program.
Farmington head coach Mike Switch said it was the press defense of Shiprock's JV unit that the Lady Scorpions struggled against.
"They were just able to capitalize on our turnovers. They were very quick and athletic, and they gave us fits at times with their press," said Farmington head coach Mike Switch.
Switch credited Shiprock varsity head coach Larenson Henderson for doing a good job with his team at all levels.
"He is doing a great job implementing a system and philosophy. It is a credit to him for doing a good job," Switch said. "Our players are very young, and I am still very proud of them for being coachable. This is just a lot of growing for us."
The Lady Scorps (1-2) will play Ignacio, Colo., today at 3:30 p.m.
Henderson said his varsity team played with low energy against Ignacio, but he thinks the team will be motivated against the JV team tonight.
"From the start of the year, I said the pressure was on the varsity team to keep their spot. The JV team right now wants some of those spots, so they are going to have to work for it," Henderson said.
St. Pius X 65, Kirtland Central 35
Another big scoring drought hurt the defending 4A state champion Lady Broncos on Friday night.
Kirtland Central (2-5) was outscored 18-1 in the second quarter against St. Pius X en rout to a 65-35 loss.
"That was it. In the second half we just kind of went back-and-forth and we never threatened them," said Kirtland Central head coach Kevin Holman. "One of the things I wondered coming into the season was if we could score. When a team beats us up like Pius did today or Clovis did yesterday, you want to say it is youth and inexperience. We had shots, we just didn't make them."
Kirtland Central plays again today in the loser's bracket of the Gallup tournament. Holman said the team has to just keep plugging away, regardless of opponent.
"We have to keep going and keep shooting the ball. You can't score unless you shoot it," Holman said.
Bloomfield 57, Crownpoint 38
The Lady Bobcats picked up win No. 1 on the season with a home victory Friday against Crownpoint.
Bloomfield (1-4) beat Crownpoint 57-38 behind 10 points apiece from Jasmine Sappington and Trinity Mayo.
Haili Bekes and Jeanie Montes each scored nine and Kallan Pablo had another eight for the Lady Bobcats.
"We had been struggling, playing good quarters only here and there. Tonight, we got up 17-2 in the first quarter," said Bloomfield head coach Dan Larabee.
Bloomfield is off until the Laguna Acoma tournament next week where it opens against Estancia.
Aztec 76, Dove Creek, Colo. 37
The Tigers opened the 2012-13 season with a win Friday night.
Aztec (1-0) defeated Dove Creek, Colo., behind 13 points scored from both Troy Choman and Eli King.
"We had pretty balanced scoring with Conner Gaskins also scoring 10," said Aztec head coach Jody Christman. "It was nice to finally get on the court and get a look at ourselves against somebody else to see where we are."
Aztec will play Mancos, Colo., today in the Mancos tournament title game.
Moriarty 54, Farmington 48
Farmington dropped to 0-3 Friday night, but the Scorpions have only been outscored by 12 points this season.
The Scorps received 21 points from Matt Huffhines, but fell to Moriarty 54-48.
"We just weren't able to finish the game. We had a 10-point lead in the first half and played really well," said FHS head coach Paul Corley. "The second half, we quit playing to win and started playing not to lose. They put on a three-quarter court press and we had problems with it. We just weren't able to execute. It was another tough loss, but we're going to keep grinding away. The kids played hard and with a lot of heart."
Ethan Graff also had 14 points in the game for Farmington, which plays at Albuquerque Academy today.