FARMINGTON — The Shiprock girls basketball team is perfect heading into the 3A state playoffs.
The Lady Chieftains moved to 26-0 this season after demolishing Thoreau 70-21 in the District 1-3A tournament final on Friday night at the Chieftain Pit.
"They are excited but also feel like they haven't accomplished anything," Shiprock head coach Larenson Henderson said of his team. "They're looking forward to the big tournament."
After a relatively tight first quarter in which Shiprock led 19-10, the Lady Chiefs held the Lady Hawks (17-9) to just 11 points for the rest of the game.
"We were full-court pressing and were really quick. The girls were reading their offense well and cutting off the pass," Henderson said. "We did a good job pressuring the ball, too."
Shiprock took a 39-13 lead into halftime and then expanded the margin to 57-16 after three quarters before cruising to the victory in the fourth quarter.
Shjantel Grey led a balanced Lady Chiefs' scoring attack with 10 points in the victory.
"That's just the way we want it," Henderson said. "Everybody got the chance to contribute."
Despite being undefeated, Shiprock is ranked No. 3 in the MaxPreps.com poll and will have to wait until Sunday to see if the squad earned the top seed in the state tournament bracket or if it will go to the current No. 1 Lovington (21-4).
"I think Lovington as the two-time state champs deserve to be No. 1," Henderson said. "Hopefully, we'll be No. 2 and get to match up with (No. 3) Portales, then see Lovington in the final. I think the girls, with their competitiveness, want to beat both, and the title would be sweeter if we can do it."Joshua Perry can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org; 505-564-4577. Follow him on Twitter @jperrysuu.