Eagles soar to sixth straight win; Bloomfield pulls clear of Shiprock basketball

Steven Bortstein
Farmington Daily Times

FARMINGTON — The Navajo Prep boys basketball team remains on a roll, having extended their win streak to six in a row on Monday night, winning on the road over Thoreau.

Meantime, Bloomfield and Gallup High School boys basketball teams also picked up important wins as prep basketball enters the final weeks of the regular season. 

Here's a look back at Monday night's action.

Boys Basketball

NAVAJO PREP 73, Thoreau 61

Senior Dontrelle Denetso scored 19 points in the first half and led the Navajo Prep boys basketball team to a convincing district win on the road, knocking off Thoreau by a final of 73-61.

Denetso finished the night with 24 points and six assists, to go along with outstanding performances from Orion King and Collin Bia, who put this game out of reach with a 43-22 lead at halftime.

The win extends Navajo Prep's win streak to six as the Eagles improve to 12-7 overall and 6-1 in District 1-3A. The Eagles, which saw some of their games last month postponed to due to pandemic-related quarantines, have played seven games in the last 13 days and have two more games scheduled for this week.

Navajo Prep's Dontrelle Denetso hits a fall-away jumper against a pair of Bloomfield defenders in their first round game of the Marv Sanders Invitational Tournament in the Scorpion Arena at Farmington High School.

"There's pluses and minuses playing a bunch of games in a row, but if you can keep guys from getting too banged up, it can definitely give you an opportunity to work on a lot in a short amount of time," said Navajo Prep head coach Matt Melvin.

The Eagles led by as much as 31 points early in the fourth quarter before Thoreau (9-14 overall, 2-7 district) made a bit of a rally, outscoring Navajo Prep 32-16 in the final frame.

The win completes a season sweep of the Hawks, who lost to Navajo Prep last week at the Eagle's Nest by a final of 76-45.

GALLUP 73, Rehoboth Christian 61

The Gallup High School boys basketball team scored a big non-district win Monday night at home, beating Rehoboth Christian 73-61 in a game that was rescheduled after being postponed last month.

The Bengals were scheduled to face the Lynx on Jan. 18, but the game was postponed due to pandemic-related school closings. Gallup will have one more game this week, Tuesday night on the road against Bernalillo, which was also rescheduled from last month.

The win improves Gallup's overall record this season to 10-10, which puts them in a virtual tie atop the District 1-4A standings with Miyamura and Bloomfield, while Kirtland Central is just a game back of all three teams.

LOS ALAMOS 54, Miyamura 52

The Los Alamos High School basketball team came away with a big win on the road Monday night, staving off a late rally from Miyamura with a 52-50 victory.

The Hilltoppers and Patriots were scheduled to face off on Jan. 15, but the game was canceled due to pandemic-related closures and rescheduled for this week. 

Los Alamos got off to a fast start, opening up a 28-18 lead in the second quarter thanks to leading scorers sophomore Niko Garcia and senior Mark Cleland. The Hilltoppers led by nine going into the locker room, but that lead quickly evaporated in the second half.

Miyamura senior Mathias Rodriguez led the charge with 20 points on the night, helping the Patriots outscore Los Alamos 14-8 in the third quarter, trimming the Hilltoppers lead to 42-39 entering the fourth quarter.

Los Alamos opened the fourth period strong, leading by as much as nine points midway through the frame before Miyamura launched another rally, tying the game at 51 with less than three minutes to play. Senior Jayde Irving teamed with Rodriguez, converting on crucial three-point shots before Los Alamos responded yet again. 

Garcia and Cleland each knocked down pivotal baskets in the late minutes for the Hilltoppers, earning their third straight win and snapping Miyamura's six-game win streak.

Los Alamos (12-10 overall, 2-2 District 2-4A) trail Espanola Valley and Taos in the district standings.

Miyamura has an overall record of 11-11 this season, but remain unbeaten (6-0) in District 1-4A, one game ahead of crosstown rival Gallup. Those two teams will square off Thursday at 7 p.m. at Gallup High School.

BLOOMFIELD 55, Shiprock 27

After getting off to a slow start Monday night at home against Shiprock, the Bloomfield High School boys basketball team erupted in the second half, winning their second straight game by knocking off the Chieftains 55-27 in a district contest at Bobcat Arena.

The win keeps Bloomfield tied atop the District 1-4A standings alongside Miyamura, both with 11-11 records. Gallup (10-10) and Kirtland Central (10-11) make it a crowded leaderboard in the district with less than two weeks remaining in the regular season.

Bloomfield boys basketball coach Randy Crockett talks to his team between quarters of a game at Lillywhite Gym in Aztec.

Bloomfield trailed the Chieftains 21-20 going into the locker room at halftime, but came out strong in the third quarter, outscoring Shiprock 21-4 and running off with the lead.

"At halftime, we talked about a lack of focus and lack of ball pressure on defense," according to Bloomfield head coach Randy Crockett. "The kids really picked things up on the defensive end in the second half."

The Bobcats did much of the same in the fourth quarter, outscoring Shiprock 14-2 on their way to victory.

Aaron Watchman led Bloomfield with 18 points, while Ryan Thompson's 12 points and Jeremiah Sandoval's 11 points paved the way for the victory.

More:High school basketball roundup: Gallup Lady Bengals edge clear of Kirtland Central

The blowout win over Shiprock comes on the heels of an emotional 49-46 win last week at home over Kirtland Central and gives the Bobcats some much-needed momentum down the stretch of the regular season.

Bloomfield will be on the road to face Aztec on Thursday at 7 p.m. Shiprock (5-16 overall, 1-5 district) has lost three straight and 11 of their last 12 games, and will be at home Thursday at 7 p.m. to face district rival Kirtland Central.

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