PV beats Farmington for third time this season

Kirtland Central crushes Montezuma-Cortez 55-11 on the road

Jake Newby

FARMINGTON — Much like it did against Los Alamos on Saturday, the Piedra Vista girls basketball team had a strong second half and defeated Farmington 49-41 tonight at the Jerry A. Conner Fieldhouse.

Piedra Vista's Danni Russo makes a shot against Farmington's Celeste Coolidge during their game on Monday at the Jerry A. Conner Fieldhouse in Farmington.

PV (10-6) rallied back from a 22-16 halftime deficit behind a tenacious full-court press and a strong offensive final quarter from Dani Russo, who scored a game high 14 points.

Lady Panthers coach Joe Reed said he thinks his team wore down the Lady Scorpion guards with the press.

"The message to the girls at halftime was, 'We're playing well, we're just not shooting the ball very well,'" Reed said. "In the first half, we couldn't buy a basket. But, we stayed with our press, and we were able to outscore them 19-15 in the third quarter. And obviously, our shots started to fall."

PV made the comeback complete by winning the fourth quarter 14-4. Farmington coach Brady Rivers said that after running the offense, protecting the ball and playing hard in the opening two quarters, depth became an issue in the second half.

"Our bench is not as deep as their bench, so yeah, it started to take a toll," Rivers said. "We turned the ball over a little more in the second half. Some of the girls probably played a few too many minutes, too. Because even when we went to the free-throw line, we were too fatigued to make those shots."

PV, now in class 6A, swept 5A's Farmington in the season series 3-0, which Reed said is an impressive feat.

Farmington's Brianna Charley drives to the basket against Piedra Vista on Monday at the Jerry A. Conner Fieldhouse in Farmington.

"It's hard to beat any team three times in the same year because of the familiarity factor," Reed said. "I know Farmington is a team that's going to do great things at the 5A level."

Tamia Pete led Farmington with 10 points. The Lady Scorpions (6-6) will have a hard time toppling the .500 mark on Friday when they host West Mesa (10-1).

Also on Friday, PV will host Sandia (9-2).

Kirtland Central 55, Montezuma-Cortez, Colo., 13

In a game that was pushed back from Saturday due to snow and ice, the Lady Broncos hammered Montezuma-Cortez, Colo., 55-13 on the road tonight.

Haile Gleason paced Kirtland Central (5-7) with 14 points in a blowout win that was anything but a blowout in the first half.

"We didn't play very well at all in the first half," KC coach John Zecca said. "We had 16 turnovers. I knew it was bad, but when I heard that I said, 'Oh my God, I can't believe we had that many turnovers in the first half.' Maybe they had a little wake-up call at halftime."

KC forced double-digit turnovers in the second half, continually confusing the Lady Panthers with different traps and presses.

The Lady Broncos committed only two turnovers after halftime on their way to a 20-6 second-half advantage.

KC will next plays at Aztec (10-5) on Jan 17.

Jake Newby covers sports for The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4577.