WLV, RHS, Mora girls advance

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By Dave Kavanaugh

West Las Vegas and Robertson are headed to the quarterfinals of the New Mexico girls' state basketball tournament in Class 3A. Mora is moving on to the Class 2A quarters.

WLV, the seventh seed in the tourney, overcame a strong first half by visiting No. 10 seed Ruidoso to win 58-48. The Lady Dons will play No. 2 Portales at 11:30 a.m. Tuesday at The Pit in Albuquerque. Portales breezed past No. 15 Hatch Valley 61-17.

Robertson, saddled with the No. 11 seed, had to travel to No. 6 Crownpoint but had little trouble in a 61-38 victory. The Lady Cardinals meet No. 3 Lovington at 8 a.m. Tuesday, also at The Pit. Lovington dispatched No. 14 Miyamura 67-48.

Other 3A girls' quarterfinals will see No. 1 Pojoaque playing No. 8 Socorro at 6:30 p.m. and No. 4 St. Michael's squaring off against district rival Santa Fe Indian, the No. 12 seed, at 3. The undefeated Elkettes, defending state champs, beat Wingate 61-37, while Socorro edged ninth-seeded Tohatchi 57-54. SFIS upset fifth-seeded Hope Christian 53-45 to set up an all-District 2-3A quarterfinal with St. Mike's, a 62-40 winner over No. 13 Thoreau.

With Pojo, St. Mike's, SFIS, Robertson and WLV all in the round of eight, it looks to be another year of dominance for the district. Should RHS and West both win Tuesday against higher seeds, it would be an East-West matchup in the semifinals. An all-district Final Four, something that happened in football two years ago, is not inconceivable.

In Class 2A, Mora survived what coach Mark Cassidy dubbed an "ugly" defensive battle, topping McCurdy 25-22. The Rangerettes, 22-6, await Sunday's seeding meeting to see whom they will play in the quarterfinals -- and when. That game will be held Tuesday at the Santa Ana Star Center in Rio Rancho.

Pecos' Lady Panthers lost at Penasco 69-52 on Friday, bringing an end to a solid season for coach Benny Gallegos and his team.

Joining Mora and Penasco in the 2A girls' round of eight will be Navajo Prep, Navajo Pine, Lordsburg, Santa Rosa, Texico and Tularosa, all winners on Friday.

All boys' state first-round games are set for Saturday. West Las Vegas and Mora are on the road, visiting Wingate and Mesa Vista, respectively; Pecos is at home, taking on Penasco.