Things really ramped up for the Hondo boys and girls teams on Jan. 26, as they hit the road for a pair of District 3-1A contests at Vaughn.
The Vaughn Eagles and Aguilas stand as the strongest rivals to Hondo for a district title, and Hondo’s teams came through.
After an initial slow start, the Lady Eagles beat the Aguilas 32-20, while the Hondo boys earned a 64-42 victory.
On the boys’ side, Hondo was facing a Vaughn team that was short-handed. Even so, they were good enough to waylay Corona on Tuesday.
“They still looked pretty good,” said Hondo coach Ben Sanchez of the Vaughn Eagles. “We just stayed in straight man to man defense and tried to keep the ball out of the shooters’ hands.”
Hondo (14-5, 2-0 district) may have won, but Sanchez said the Eagles’ defense still left something to be desired.
“We played decent offense, but were still sloppy defensively,” Sanchez said. “One kid had 18 points on us, which is unacceptable.”
As for Hondo’s scoring, Simon Gonzalez led the way with 26 points, while Antonio Vasquez had 18. Almost every Eagle got points.
“They met the challenge well. They were really focused,” Sanchez said. “It’s a good rivalry, and it’s good for the kids to step up and play a full game.”
Girls survive slow start
Hondo’s girls found out just how tough the Aguilas are, particularly after they missed their first eight shots from the field.
But the Lady Eagles (14-4, 2-0) settled down and built up a 15-point lead at one point en route to the victory.
“Vaughn is very scrappy, they’re very physical. You have to hand it to them,” said Hondo coach Alice Velasquez. “Also, if you have an officiating crew that allows that kind of play, it will change the complexion of any game at any time.”
Things may have been rough, but the Lady Eagles prevailed, and now they look ahead to a pair of district games before a long stretch of non district contests.
“That’s welcome, because we’re banged up and have a lot of cold victims. We need a little time to get well,” Velasquez said of her team’s four games against Cloudcroft, Mountainair, Carrizozo and Mesilla Valley. “Against Corona, we’ll have to play well, and hopefully the Lake Arthur game will give us an opportunity to work on the things we need to. We hope to get some victories and continue our win streak.”