RHS teams clinch top seeds

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District hoops tourneys this week

By Dave Kavanaugh

The path to both District 2-3A basketball championships will go through Mike Marr Gymnasium.

Robertson’s boys’ and girls’ basketball teams ensured that this past week, clinching both regular-season district titles and No. 1 seeds in the 2-3A tournaments to be held this week.


The first Cardinals-Dons game (played Tuesday at Gillie Lopez Gym) may have been spellbinding, but the sequel was considerably less so.

Robertson (19-6 overall, 6-0 district) clamped down on its cross-town rival in Thursday’s rematch at Mike Marr Gym, never letting the Dons get too close in a 75-53 blowout.

Thursday marked the return to action of Cardinal forward Fabian Varela.

The Cardinals made it two double-digit wins in as many nights Friday, beating Raton 71-56 to conclude the regular season.

Raton plays at West Monday to open the boys’ tourney. Monday’s winner moves on to play at Taos on Tuesday. Tuesday’s winner meets Robertson on Thursday.

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In one final East-West matchup to close the week, Robertson’s girls stumped West Las Vegas 58-50 Friday night at Mike Marr.

The win gave No. 3 RHS a sweep of the Lady Dons and locked up first place in the district.

Michelle Tapia gave West an early lead, but Kendra Montoya and Eliana Herrera both sank three-point baskets to stake Robertson to a 12-6 lead after one period.

(Notably, Montoya and Herrera had combined for 31 points and eight assists in a 61-53 win at Taos on Wednesday.)

Despite the work of Miranda Martinez and Briana Montaño to counter them, the Lady Cardinal guards came up with one of their better team efforts of the season and crafted a 25-18 halftime lead.

West made a run in the third period, pulling within 35-33, driving a lane softened by the absence of the injured Kassandra Tapia.

But Marka Garcia hit three of four free throws to start the fourth quarter, giving the Lady Cards a boost.

Later, Jamie Allen scored and drew a foul and then another, causing West’s increasingly valuable post Michelle Tapia to foul out in the process. Shannen Lopez’s free throws shortly thereafter made it a 51-42 margin with 3:26 remaining.

Down the stretch, Robertson hit its foul shots well enough to keep the Lady Dons at bay.

The Lady Cards dusted Raton the following night 52-36 after taking a 29-17 halftime advantage.

Meanwhile, West relinquished its lead over Taos in the second period, fell behind 20-13 at half and wound up losing 48-43. Miranda Martinez had 20 for WLV.

• • •

Led by Tim Romero’s 30, Mora held off Peñasco 77-70 on Saturday evening, completing an 8-0 District 2-2A run while improving to 24-2 overall. The Rangers had beaten Pecos 64-52 on Wednesday.

Mora is ranked third in Class 2A behind Tularosa and Bosque.