FARMINGTON — Last season's 4A state semifinalist Santa Fe had little trouble dispatching Piedra Vista Monday night in the second meeting this season between the two schools.
The Lady Demons outscored the Lady Panthers 37-2 in an 18-minute stretch spanning the middle of the first quarter until late in the third quarter to come away with a 58-30 win at the Jerry A. Conner Fieldhouse in Farmington.
"I don't know if it's because it's finals week or what, but we weren't mentally sharp," said PV head coach Joe Reed.
The two teams met on Dec. 6 in Santa Fe Indian School's tournament in a much tighter affair in which the Lady Demons came out with a 52-43 win.
PV (3-3) opened a 10-6 lead in the first quarter, but then its offense went cold trying to deal with Santa Fe's pressure defense.
"Their pressure on the ball made it hard for our guards to make the entry pass," Reed said. "They made it difficult and the soft overhead passes we made just don't work. That team has a bunch of length and some very athletic girls."
The Lady Demons (9-1) forced 24 turnovers and held PV to just 10-of-48 shooting from the field.
"Our defense has been getting better," said Santa Fe head coach Elmer Chavez. "We've been spending a lot (of time) on conditioning. I felt that we've improved and took them out of what they wanted to run. When they tried to go inside, they had a hard time. That's one of our better games of the year."
Kayla Herrera led Santa Fe with a game-high 18 points on 7-of-13 shooting. Sabrina Lozada-Cabbage added 17 and Brianna Hernandez chipped in with 12 in the victory.
Kaleigh Graham was the only Lady Panther who scored in double figures with 10.
PV will be in action twice more this week when it hosts Bloomfield on Thursday and travels to Los Alamos on Friday.
"We can't stop now," Reed said. "We can't sit around and pout about it. We've got to get better and learn, then be ready to play Thursday."