Quay County Sun - Serving the High Plains

By Thomas Garcia
Staff writer 

Lady Rattlers 'firing on all cylinders'

Boys to play Johnny May Classic at Tularosa.

 

December 6, 2017



The Tucumcari Lady Rattlers are on a four-game win streak following Saturday’s championship win against Tularosa at the Lady Lions basketball tournament at Santa Rosa.

“The team was firing on all cylinders during the championship game,” said Gary Hittson, Lady Rattlers head coach.

The Lady Rattlers beat Tularosa 66-43. They advanced to the championship game by beating Estancia, 77-33, and Fort Sumner/House, 51-39.

Hittson said the team played a strong game on both fronts against the Lady Wildcats. He said the team overcame some struggles from the first two games.

“At times the team seemed lost on defense, almost as if they didn’t know their assignments,” Hittson said.

Hittson said the girls need to strengthen their defensive play. He said the lapses in their focus created scoring opportunities for other teams.

“We have to know our assignments and communicate on the floor,” said Aliyah Herrera, tournament MVP. “There were times we were out of synch and the other team was able to get easy points.”

Herrera said the team will need to have the right focus and a strong defense when they play this weekend at the Logan tournament.

Rattlers head for Tularosa tourney

The Tucumcari Rattlers will be looking for their first win of the season as they participate this weekend in the Johnny Mays Classic basketball tournament at Tularosa.

“We have used the past week to work on some new things, while also stressing ball control,” said John Span, Rattlers head coach.

Span said the boys are ready to get out on the court against the tough competition at the Tularosa tournament. He said the tournament with teams including Hatch, Cobre, Lordsburg and Eunice is just what the Rattlers need.

“The guys know they need to be ready to play, it’s trial by fire,” Span said. “Tough matchups early in the season help to develop a team.”

Good starts for Logan teams

The Logan Longhorns and Lady Longhorns opened their basketball seasons in tournament play last weekend at Dora.

Both teams are under the directions of new head coaches.

The Longhorns (2-1), finished third in the tournament, in which head coach Kyle Griffiths said the team did a good job pushing the ball down the court on offense.

“We still have work to do on our defense, but overall the guys played well,” Griffiths said.

Griffiths said the team is still working on improving communication on the court. He said the introduction of a new system along with having young players stepping up into their first varsity starting role can lead to some issues.

“We still have a lot of work to do; it’s just the start of the season and we are a long way from where I’d like the team to be,” Griffiths said.

The Longhorns will be hosting a basketball tournament Thursday and Saturday with teams including Evangel Christian Academy and Boys Ranch.

The Lady Longhorns started their season off strong with a 28-21 win over the Lady Coyotes winning the tournament championship Saturday at Dora.

“The level of competition at the tournament was great,” said Glenna Strand. “It was a good way to challenge the Lady Longhorns right out of the gate.”

Strand, who is starting her first year as head coach, said the girls played well defensively but still need to work on their offense. She said the girls are still transitioning from volleyball conditioning.

“I want the team to be a defensive power house,” Strand said. “The team still has a lot of work to do but this weekend I look forward to the challenges ahead.”

Strand said the Logan tournament, beginning on Thursday, will give the Lady Longhorns the chance to compete against Tucumcari and Clovis JV.

“Of all the matchups, I am looking forward to playing against the Lady Rattlers,” Strand said. “Tucumcari is off to a hot start, they are the type of team you can test yourself and benefit playing against.”

 

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