The Tucumcari High School Boys and Girls basketball teams opened their season at Fort Sumner on a losing note. The Fort Sumner boys beat the Rattlers 62-47 and the Ft. Sumner girls beat the Lady Rattlers 61-24.
It was a fast-paced Rattler style of game, but the Foxes of Fort Sumner scored 29 points in the fourth quarter to outlast Tucumcari. The Rattlers were up by eight points at the half and went up by as much as 11 points in the third quarter. Fort Sumner scored eight unanswered points in the opening minutes of the fourth quarter, however, to pull ahead for good. Rattler Coach John Span started Jeremy Lopez at the point, but Lopez quickly got into foul trouble. Nemi Salvador came off the bench to run the offense, scoring a game-high 13 points.
Nathan McDonald started and finished with 12 points and Robert Munoz added eight for the game.
Senior Chris McCasland had a quiet night, fouling out with just four points. The Rattlers were called all too often for traveling during the game and often went for the quick off-balance shot rather than patiently setting up plays.
Lady Rattler Head Coach Alicia Trujillo said it would be tough early on for her team, and the girls found out how tough it could be as the Lady Vixens dominated.
Tucumcari managed just four points in the first half. The Lady Rattlers will have to solve their turnover woes if they expect to be competitive this season. Ft. Sumner’s press overwhelmed the Lady Rattlers as passes were often overthrown. T’Shawna Span showed she can generate some offense as she scored six straight points to open the fourth quarter. Jamie Jones and Whitney Spinks were the only other Lady Rattlers to hit baskets. Jana Kirskey managed to hit a couple of free throws.