FARMINGTON — Hot shooting and lots of Farmington turnovers gave Shiprock a sizeable win in the second-round of the Lady Scorpion Invite.
The Shiprock Lady Chieftains jumped out to a 15-1 lead quickly in the first quarter against the Farmington Lady Scorpions on Friday night. The Lady Scorps turned the ball over eight times, and the Lady Chieftains made three 3-point baskets in the game's opening eight minutes.
That trend continued as Shiprock (10-0) eased its way to a 77-21 victory.
"My second five off the bench got a chance to play a lot and do things we are working on in practice," said Shiprock head coach Larenson Henderson. "It is hard to tell the girls to stop. You teach the kids how to score and how to do the things we are supposed to do to get to state, and I can't tell them to stop."
Shiprock increased its lead to 41-13 by halftime. Freshman guard Tanisha Begay had 13 of her game-high 20 points in the first half.
"I was kind of in a slump in the games before. I just snapped out of it this game and started finding my shots," Begay said.
Sophomore Lacey Howe added 15 more points for Shiprock. Aranxta Curley also had 12 points. Shontai Grey, Shiprock's last girl off the bench, finished with eight points, six of which came in the fourth quarter. Shania Harry also had nine points.
Many of the Lady Chiefs' points came off turnovers by Farmington High (4-3). The Lady Scorps turned it over 17 times in the first half, and 29 times by the end of the game.
"I think we are just a little bit overwhelmed playing Shiprock," said Farmington High head coach Danny Secrest. "Shiprock is a very good team, and Larenson is doing a great job."
Shiprock shot 31-for-61 in the game -- including 9-of-14 from behind the 3-point line. Farmington High shot just 9-for-32.
"It was nice to see because we haven't been scoring a lot lately," Begay said. "Our passes are getting better."
Shiprock also won the rebounding battle 30-16.
"We just need to learn to get the ball in the basket, first," Secrest said. "The girls are definitely putting their heart and soul into what we are doing as coaches. We are a new program, and we have some talent. We just have to push forward."
Farmington will get a chance to face District 1-4A foe Kirtland Central (2-6) in a non-district contest 4 p.m. today. The KCHS Lady Broncos defeated Bayfield High 49-45 in the second round of the round-robin tournament on Friday night.
Shiprock will finish the tournament against Bayfield High at 2 p.m. today.
"We want to do just what we did (Friday). We want to continue to play smart defense, stay down and move our feet," Henderson said. "We want to play good, smart ball and stay in control."
Los Alamos 55, Piedra Vista 33
Piedra Vista's girls basketball team scored less than half as many points on Friday night as it did on Thursday.
A day after beating Bloomfield 68-26 at home, the PV Lady Panthers (4-4) fell on the road 55-33 at the hands of Los Alamos (3-5).
"It went pretty bad for us. It was our worst game of the year," said PV head coach Joe Reed. "I don't know if we were tight or what. I have no explanation for it."
Reed said his team struggled with fouls and turnovers.
"We had a slow start and a high volume of turnovers and foul trouble," he said. "Our mentality from the start was as if we thought Los Alamos would just hand us the game."
Kieyoomia Benally led PV with 14 points in the loss.
The Lady Panthers are off until the Native American Basketball Invitational begins on Jan. 2. PV opens that tournament with a game at Navajo Prep before finishing the last two games of the tournament at the Santa Ana Star Center in Rio Rancho.
"We are going to practice every day except Christmas Eve and Christmas Day," Reed said. "We really have some things to work on, especially taking care of the ball. We shoot decent from the field, but getting the shots up without silly turnovers is the problem."
Bloomfield 46, Tohatchi 38
The Bloomfield Lady Bobcats drew confidence from a win right before heading into the holidays.
Bloomfield (3-5) defeated Tohatchi 46-38 at home on Friday night. Jasmine Sappington led the charge for Bloomfield with 12 points and 14 rebounds.
"I am really proud of the girls to get this win going into the Christmas break," said Bloomfield head coach Tom Adair. "We led the whole game and played really well as a team."
Shaelyn White had another 11 points for Bloomfield, and Kara Watchman added nine more.
Gabrielle Munoz led Bloomfield with three assists and four steals. Louisa Maestas also had four steals.
Bloomfield is off until the Aztec girls tournament, which begins Jan. 2.John Livingston can be reached at email@example.com; 505-564-4648. Follow him on Twitter @jlivi2.