By Thomas Garcia: Quay County Sun
The Tucumcari Rattlers dropped two to the Springer Red Devils Friday night at the Snake Pit in Tucumcari.
“We need to play defense with our feet and not with our hands,” said Tucumcari girls coach Wayne Ferguson. “We got into foul trouble and that sent their players to the line for points. We put pressure on all of their players. They just made some tough shots. We outscored them everywhere on the floor, except the 3-point line.”
The Lady Rattlers began the night trailing 12-7 to the Lady Devils at the end of the first period. Then in the second quarter, they got into foul trouble they trailed the Lady Devils 26-14 at the half.
In the third period the Rattlers outscored the Lady Devils by one point but still trailed 33-22. In the final period, Rattler Kadi Powers scored 7 points and had two rebounds to finish with 13 points and 3 rebounds.
But the Devils’ relentless offense maintained the lead over the Rattlers. Devils freshman Jessica Burton scored 10 points in the fourth, ending the night with 21 points helping to clinch the 50-43 win.
“We need to come out and play hard from the very beginning not wait till we are behind,” said Ferguson. “It is hard to come back from behind when your opponent keeps scoring.”
Lady Rattlers game leaders
• 12 T’Shawna Span had 3 points and 9 rebounds
• 13 Kadi Powers had 13 points and 3 rebounds
• 32 Katlin Lopez had 6 points and 5 rebounds
• 22 Cydnie Rich had 6 points and 6 rebounds
The Rattlers played the Devils close throughout the entire first period going into the second period with a tied score of 16-16. The Devils pulled away with the lead with four of their players scoring a combined 18 points to the Rattlers 8 points in the second period going into the half with a 34-24 lead.
In the third period, the Devils continued to score. But their lead would quickly disappear when Rattlers sophomore Curtis Simpson scored 12 of his 18 points in the third period to pull the Rattlers within 6.
The Devils continued to score in the final quarter despite a defensive press. The Rattlers eventually began to exchange scores rather than decreasing the Devils lead and lost 69-55.
“We fouled there at the end and that sent them to the line to increase their lead and you cannot do that when you have a team that can make such tough shots,” said coach John Span. “ “Their offense attacked the gaps in out defense and, in turn, scored on us. They are a good team. And despite the pressure we put on them on defense they kept making tough shots.”
Rattlers game leaders
• 40 Drew White had 12 points, 2 rebounds and 2 assists
• 45 Josh Villegas had 13 points and 2 rebounds
• 31 Curtis Simpson had 18 points and 2 rebounds
• 12 Andrez Apodaca had 14 points, 4 rebounds and 3 assists