Scorpions boys basketball wins Gallup Invitational; Broncos boys win sixth straight

Steven Bortstein
Farmington Daily Times
  • Aztec girls team comes up short in Cuba Invitational title game
  • Newcomb boys basketball wins third straight with road win over Shiprock
  • Farmington High girls basketball remains unbeaten with road victory over Shiprock

FARMINGTON — A number of local and area high schools are represented in basketball tournaments across the state.

The Farmington High School boys basketball team won their second tournament of the season, claiming top honors in the Gallup Invitational, while girls and boys teams from Aztec High School took part in the Cuba Invitational.

Meantime, there were boys and girls basketball games involving teams not in tournament competition happening across San Juan County over the weekend.

Here's a look at how all these teams are faring in and out of tournament competition.

Boys Basketball

Scorpions capture top prize in Gallup Invitational 

The Farmington Scorpions won their second tournament of the current season, taking the championship of the Gallup Invitational, beating Socorro on Saturday night by a final of 56-41.

Farmington High School boys basketball's Cody Vassar-Steen is joined by Cayden Yazzie and Landon Begay following their championship game in the Gallup Invitational at Gallup High School over Socorro on Saturday, Jan. 8, 2022. Vassar-Steen was named tournament MVP while Yazzie and Begay were each named to the all-tournament team.

The Scorpions won all three games in the tournament bracket, beating Sandia Prep on Thursday by a final of 57-44, then knocking off Miyamura on Friday 76-51.

Cody Vassar-Steen, who scored 39 total points in the three games, was named the  tournament's Most Valuable Player. Cayden Yazzie and Landon Begay were named to the all-tournament team.

More:Kirtland Central and Farmington High boys basketball teams pick up big wins

The win over Socorro improves the Scorpions record to 14-1 this season and they are in the midst of a six-game win streak. Last month, the Scorpions took the crown in the Marv Sanders Memorial Invitational.

"We still have some areas we're going to have to improve, but I think we're headed in the right direction," said Scorpions coach Larry-Don Chitty. "It's been a really great weekend for our program."

The Scorpions will close out their non-district schedule on Tuesday at 7 p.m. when they host Miyamura. Their District 2-5A schedule begins later the following week when they host Sandia on Tuesday, Jan. 18. 

Navajo Prep finishes eighth in Invite

The Miyamura High boys basketball team knocked off Navajo Prep in the first round of the Gallup Invitational on Thursday night by a final of 62-53.

The loss dropped the Eagles into the consolation bracket, where they lost in the second round game by a final of 48-28 to Sandia Prep

On Saturday, the Eagles lost to Window Rock, dropping their overall record on the season to 6-7 while suffering their fifth straight loss.

More:Kirtland Central and Farmington High boys basketball teams pick up big wins

Navajo Prep opens their District 1-3A campaign at home on Tuesday at 7 p.m. against Tohatchi.

Aztec claims third place trophy at Cuba Invitational 

The Aztec High School boys basketball team earned the third place trophy at the Cuba Invitational, going 2-1 over the weekend and winning their finale on Saturday by a final of 73-50 over Tse' Yi' Gai High School.

Aidan Lee scored 15 points in the contest, while also being named to the all-tournament team. Jedidah Jones led the Tigers in the Saturday victory with 20 points. 

Aztec opened the tournament with an 83-33 blowout win on Thursday over Shiprock Northwest, but lost in the second round by a final of 63-48 on Friday to Coronado High School.

With the tournament wrapped up, Aztec (4-10) returns to regular season action on Tuesday at 7 p.m. when they host the Academy for Technology and The Classics out of Santa Fe.

In other boys basketball action this week:

KIRTLAND CENTRAL 60, Piedra Vista 52

The Kirtland Central High School boys basketball team earned a hard-fought, emotional 60-52 win on the road over Piedra Vista in the Jerry A Conner Fieldhouse at Piedra Vista High School.

The win is the sixth straight for the Broncos, who improve to 8-6 on the season while the Panthers have lost six of their last seven games and fall to 6-8 on the season.

The game was close throughout, with Kirtland Central leading 28-26 at the half. Piedra Vista battled back and had the lead early in the second half before the Broncos rallied later in the third quarter, leading by eight heading into the final quarter.

More:Kirtland Central boys basketball head coach Brian Dowdy

Piedra Vista closed the gap several times early in the fourth period, but committed a few too many personal fouls which sent Kirtland Central to the free throw line and ensured the win.

Satchel Hogue led the Broncos with 18 points, while Kragen Cadman and Jarvis Mullahon, Jr. each scored 13 points.

The game ended with the Broncos shooting free throws after Piedra Vista was hit with a technical foul in the waning seconds of the contest. 

The Broncos will be on the road Tuesday night to face Espanola Valley while the Panthers will visit Bloomfield on Tuesday night.

NEWCOMB 64, Shiprock 58

Newcomb High School's Javarius John (12) looks to get past Shiprock defender Donte' Nelson (44) during their basketball game Thursday, Jan. 6, 2022 at the Chieftain Pit.

The Newcomb High School boys basketball team won their third straight game and improved to 8-6 on the season, defeating Shiprock 64-58 Thursday night at the Chieftain Pit. 

The loss drops Shiprock to a record of 4-8, Shiprock will be on the road against Wingate on Tuesday at 7 p.m.

Girls Basketball

Aztec Lady Tigers finish second in Cuba Invitational

The Aztec High School girls basketball team lost the championship game of the Cuba Invitational, falling to Socorro by a final of 30-23. 

The Lady Tigers advanced to the finals of the tournament with a first round 37-17 win over Shiprock Northwest followed by a 46-4 romp over Tse’ Yi’ Gai.

Aztec will be back in regular season action Tuesday at 7 p.m. when they visit Durango.

Kirtland Central goes 2-1 in Portales Shootout

The Kirtland Central High School girls basketball team wrapped up the Portales Invitational with a mark of 2-1 after a forfeit win over Jal on Saturday.

Jal was forced to forfeit their games in the tournament and have lost six straight games.

Kirtland Central's Jaylene Harris-Rhea emerges from a trio of Navajo Prep defenders and drives to the basket during their game, Tuesday, Dec. 21, 2021 at Kirtland Central High School.

Kirtland Central opened the tournament on Thursday losing to the host Portales Rams 51-35. The Lady Broncos bounced back with a convincing 51-30 victory in the tournament's second day over Carlsbad.

The Broncos (10-4) will be home on Tuesday at 7 p.m. when they wrap up the non-district portion of their schedule against Valencia.

In other girls basketball action this weekend:

FARMINGTON 77, Shiprock 23

Senior Audrey Henderson scored 26 points to lead the Farmington High School girls basketball team to a 77-23 romp on the road over Shiprock High School.

The top-ranked (MaxPreps Class 5A) Lady Scorpions wasted little time establishing their dominance over Shiprock, leading 40-19 at the end of the first half. Senior Kiiyani Anitielu, who leads the team in scoring this season, scored 14 points in the win. 

More:Lady Scorpions coach Larenson Henderson

Farmington improves their record to 13-0 this season and will be back on the court Tuesday at 7 p.m. when they visit Miyamura.

Shiprock falls to 3-10 on the season and will visit St. Pius on Thursday at 7 p.m.

Steve Bortstein can be reached via email at, via Twitter @DTSBortstein or on the phone at (505) 635-2680.