Pecos dominates Rattlers
January 23, 2019
The Pecos boys basketball team won a state title the last two seasons, and it looked ready to go for another during a dominating 84-45 victory Saturday over Tucumcari at the Snake Pit.
The Rattlers (2-13) actually held a 10-5 lead during the first quarter, powered by 3-point shots from Robbie Hartmann and Jesus Ramos.
But the Panthers, 14-3 overall and ranked No. 2 in Class 2A by MaxPreps.com, went on a 16-0 run after that. Pecos led by 20 points at intermission and by 30 in the third quarter.
Tucumcari coach John Span said he was impressed with the Panthers.
"They got the ball in the hole several times where I thought we were in great defensive position," he said. "They get up and down the floor well, they move well, they anticipate well, they play defense, they play offense. But one thing I'll say: Our kids never quit. They played hard."
Ramos led the Rattlers with 14 points, and Hartmann added 11.
Xavier Padilla led the Panthers with 25 points. Teammates Omar Dominguez added 19 and Juan Varela 13.
Pecos coach Ira Harge Jr. said his team's good defense kept the Rattlers from taking a bigger lead early in the game.
"That's one thing we hope is always working well: our defense," Harge said. "When we weren't making shots, especially early in the first quarter, we had to rely on that defense. It was good we came through with that.
"I know Tucumcari is struggling this year, but they really pushed us. I like what Coach Span is doing; they're a very disciplined team. It was a good test for us, especially on the road."
Clayton 57, Tucumcari 52
The Rattlers led 41-33 at the end of the third period Thursday at host Clayton, but the Yellowjackets outscored them 24-11 the rest of the way to secure a 57-52 victory.
"In the fourth quarter, we were missing shots," Span said. "Clayton turned it up and got aggressive with us. The officials weren't calling it, and we don't match up well against them. They pounded us inside and were doing a good job finishing. We didn't hit the open shots that would have gotten us the lead near the end. That was the difference in that ballgame."
Hartmann scored 19 points to led Tucumcari, and Ramos added 12.
Jaxon Arguello, in his first game after reconstructive knee surgery last year, scored 11 points for the Rattlers.
Span said having Arguello back in the varsity lineup was welcome.
"He gives us another guy who can score," he said. "He's not in shape yet, but he'll get there."
For Clayton (8-9), Jake Walker led the team with 14 points.