Shiprock girls, boys roll at home tourneys

Karl Schneider

SHIPROCK – The Shiprock girls basketball team was just as dominant in its second game of the Jerry Richardson Memorial Tournament as it was in Thursday's opener, blowing past San Juan of Blanding, Utah, 68-19 Friday night at the Chieftain Pit.

Shiprock's Shontai Grey draws a foul during a game against San Juan during the Jerry Richardson Memorial Tournament Friday at the Chieftain Pit in Shiprock.

After a bit of a slow start offensively, Shiprock led 9-3 with 2:45 remaining in the first quarter. But behind their full-court press, the Lady Chieftains closed the quarter on a 14-0 run to take a 23-3 lead.

“We’re really pushing our defense, and I think the girls are really starting to buy into it,” Shiprock head coach Larenson Henderson said. “But at the same time, I don’t know what it is about missing easy shots.”

The Lady Chieftains, who routed Navajo Pine 85-20 on Thursday, never relented following the first-quarter surge Friday and led 39-13 at halftime.

Shiprock (2-1) held the Lady Broncos (1-1) to just three points in the third quarter, pushing the lead to 58-16.

Shiprock’s Paige Dale led all scorers with 16 points while teammate Tanisha Begay scored 15 points.

Shiprock will face Farmington in the tournament championship at 1 p.m. today.

“I’m really excited to play them, and I know coach Danny (Secrest) is excited to play us. It should be a good game,” Henderson said.

Farmington 65, Navajo Pine 23

Farmington kept rolling at the Jerry Richardson Memorial Tournament, picking up a 65-23 win over Navajo Pine Friday afternoon at the Chieftain Pit.

“I thought it was pretty good. We started out really well, and the starters definitely helped with that, but they sat out the whole fourth quarter,” Farmington head coach Danny Secrest said. “It was nice to get everyone in. I think the team effort was good, and it seems like everyone is starting to jell together.”

The Lady Scorps (3-1) jumped to a 26-6 lead on Navajo Pine (0-4) after the first quarter and never looked back, pushing their advantage to 45-10 at halftime.

Brighton Clah led Farmington with 12 points while Meeya Yazzie and Tanisha Beetso added 10 points each.

Farmington will face Shiprock in the tournament championship at 1 p.m. today.

“It’s a good early game for us, to see who we are and where we’re at,” Secrest said. “We’re going to have to play good defense. Shiprock is quick with a lot of good shooters. I think we have an opportunity to win, but we’re going to have to play good defense.”

Boys basketball

Shiprock 66, Newcomb 28

Shiprock put nonstop on-ball pressure on Newcomb, and it was enough to take the Skyhawks out of rhythm to pick up a 66-28 win during the Shiprock Chieftains Tournament Friday night at the Chieftain Pit.

“Pressure-wise, it was very intense, and I thought we did an excellent job,” Shiprock head coach Chester Atcitty said. “In the second half, I wanted to maintain the intensity, but back off to the half court. But they made a little run, and I knew we weren’t going to maintain the lead by doing that, so we went back to what we were doing in the first half.”

After trailing 37-14 at halftime, Newcomb started the third quarter on a 9-2 run to cut the deficit to 39-23 midway through the quarter.

But the Chieftains got back to the full-court pressure and retook control of the game, outscoring the Skyhawks 27-5 to secure the victory.

Shiprock’s Andre Joe led all scorers with 15 points, all of which came in the first half.

Newcomb’s Shane Hale and Shannon Bitsilly each scored 11 points in the loss.

Shiprock will play Bloomfield in the tournament championship at 2:30 p.m. today.

Bloomfield 61, Aztec 32

The constant pressure of Bloomfield’s full-court press sped the tempo up to a pace Aztec couldn’t handle, and the result was a lopsided win for the Bobcats during the second day of the Shiprock Chieftains Tournament at the Chieftain Pit.

“Our defense was fine,” Bloomfield head coach Devin Manning said. “We struggled a little bit at the beginning, but once we made our adjustments we disrupted them and got some easy layups.”

Aztec head coach Jeremy Archuleta said the Tigers took the court in the wrong frame of mind.

“We got beat mentally,” Archuleta said. “As soon as the game started, we were beat mentally. We preach and teach that basketball is a head game, and today we got beat mentally.”

Bloomfield’s Malachi Pablo led all scorers with 20 points. Christian Chavez added 16 for the Bobcats.

Lindsey Larabee led the Tigers with 12 points.

Bloomfield will play Shiprock in the tournament final at 2:30 p.m. today.

Aztec will play Durango, Colo., in the third-place game at 11:30 a.m. today.

Karl Schneider is the sports editor at The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4648.