All Kirtland Central has to do is win one more game to get in the 4A state tournament for a chance to defend its state title.
After defeating Farmington 66-30 at Farmington High on Friday night, the Lady Broncos are in control of District 1-4A with a 4-0 record and a matchup with 3-1 Piedra Vista looming Tuesday.
“It is all about Tuesday night. We win Tuesday, and we get to go to the state tournament again with a chance to repeat,” said Kirtland Central head coach Kevin Holman.
The Lady Broncos (9-15, 4-0) dismantled Farmington (3-18, 0-4), creating 28 turnovers en route to the easy win.
“Kirtland played very good defense tonight. We had trouble executing from the opening tip, but Kirtland played real good press and a lot of their offense came from their defense,” said FHS head coach Mike Switch.
Kirtland Central established a 21-4 lead after the first quarter, but let Farmington hang around in the second quarter.
The Lady Broncos took a 34-18 lead into halftime, but Holman let the girls know he wasn’t pleased.
“We were up 16, but it wasn’t a good 16,” Holman said. “When you are up 21-4, you want to expand on that more. They got a chewing out at halftime and came out and played a great third to put it away.”
Kirtland Central extended its lead to 30 quickly in the third, outscoring Farmington 24-7 in the quarter.
Taylor Billey scored 10 of her game-high 21 points in the third before sitting out the fourth quarter.
“She has been awesome all year,” Holman said of his senior guard. “The rest of the girls have followed her and gotten more confident with her. To me, her and Keeshawna Ockerman are the district players of the year.”
Farmington was led by Shayna Carlowe’s 10 points, but the rest of the Lady Scorps struggled from the field all night.
At one point this year, Kirtland Central stood at 3-14.
Holman is pleased with the way the girls have responded to the initial struggles and competed hard in the final stretch of the regular season.
Now he hopes the girls can close out the district with a win at PV’s place Tuesday.
“It is going to be a good game. Mike (Christie) and I have battled for a lot of years and every game has been close, so I don’t expect anything different,” Holman said. “Right now, our girls are focused and know if they can win Tuesday they have a chance to repeat as state champs.”