FARMINGTON — The Farmington Scorpions played crosstown rival Piedra Vista in a gym more than 350 miles away from Farmington on Saturday.
The Scorpions and PV Panthers faced off in the fifth-place game of the Poe Corn Invite in Roswell. The game was close throughout, but a big third quarter helped push the Scorps to a 53-49 victory.
"We came down here with the goal of trying to get two wins and jump-starting our season," said FHS head coach Paul Corley. "We had struggled lately, but it is always huge for your team when they can beat a district rival and a city rival."
It is the first time all season Farmington (3-8) has won two consecutive games. On Friday, the Scorps beat Belen 56-51.
"It is huge for the kids knowing we have played two solid games back-to-back," Corley said.
Kyle Reynolds led the Scorpions with 13 points. Victor Lopez had another nine points, and three Scorps finished with eight points.
"We changed up our defensive approach from a soft press to playing more zone, and all the kids are finding a better rhythm," Corley said.
FHS led 20-19 at halftime but outscored the Panthers (5-5) 19-13 in the third quarter to build a nice lead.
Alonzo Araiza was PV's offensive leader with 12 points.
PV won't play again until a game on Jan. 7 at Navajo Prep. Head coach Adam Huff hopes his team can turn its inconsistent play around in 2014.
"We are giving them off until next Thursday, so I hope we can get the mind-set right so we can make a run at this thing starting with Navajo Prep," Huff said.
Roswell won the tournament after defeating Goddard 78-53. Roswell is the No. 1-ranked team in Class 4A.
Artesia placed third thanks to an 89-79 win against Grants.
The Scorpions are off until Friday when they hit the road to face Miyamura.
"The guys look forward to practice Monday and getting after it against Miyamura," Corley said. "We have some little things to fix, but I'm blessed with a coachable and humble group. I am proud of them and happy we did well in this tournament."
Farmington 53, Pecos 27
The Lady Scorpions picked up a second consecutive win on Saturday.
Farmington High improved to 6-5 with a 53-27 victory against Pecos in the fifth-place game of the St. Michael's tournament in Santa Fe.
"It was a real good win for us, and the girls played hard," said FHS head coach Danny Secrest. "We shot the ball well, and that feels good."
Amber Herbert led FHS with 13 points in the win. Breanna Boyd added another eight points.
Secrest said he believes his team has some momentum going into Friday's home game against Miyamura after breaking a three-game losing streak over the weekend.John Livingston can be reached at email@example.com; 505-564-4648. Follow him on Twitter @jlivi2.