Lady Chiefs return triumphantly to competition

By Todd Fuqua

Photo by Todd Fuqua Mescalero's Katlyn Yuzos, left, dribbles the ball around Carrizozo's Kaitlin Guevara, Jan. 12, at Mescalero.

MESCALERO – To be fair, Carrizozo was short some very important players, but Mescalero’s girls came back from a long holiday break with a vengeance, Jan. 12, with a 55-16 win over the Lady Grizzlies.

Photo by Todd Fuqua Mescalero’s Janessa Melendrez, center, starts the break after a rebound as teammates Lauryn Yuzos, left, and Nellia Enjady join the charge, Jan. 12, at Mescalero.

“I was worried we’d look past Carrizozo, not be ready to play and possibly get beat,” said Mescalero coach Elmer Chavez. “We can’t afford to drop these games.”

Carrizozo (4-14) was going on its second straight game without center Hannah Ventura and guard Joana Vega, their two top scorers.

After falling 31-19 to Corona on Tuesday, they found the going just as round against the Lady Chiefs.

Photo by Todd Fuqua Carrizozo’s Hailey Barela, center, finds the going rough against Mescalero’s Lauryn Yuzos, left, and Tunte Baca, Jan. 12, at Mescalero.

“Bad things happen, and we just have to rebound from that the best we can,” said Carrizozo coach George Vega. “We’re missing three starters from the beginning of the season, but it gives the young ones the opportunity to get in there and learn.”

Mescalero (13-1) had an 18-0 lead before the Lady Grizzlies finally got on the board on a three pointer by Suntana Zamora with 16 seconds left in the first period.

By that point, Mescalero center Lauryn Yuzos had already established her dominance inside on her way to scoring a game high total of 20 points. She also led the team with six steals and three blocks, while sister Kaitlyn Yuzos had 10 rebounds and 11 points.

Senior Kristie Gallacher had 11 points, four rebounds and three steals to lead Carrizozo in all categories.

The tone of the game will ramp up considerably for the Lady Chiefs, who welcome Fort Sumner to town on Friday.

It will be a battle of 1 vs. 2 – or maybe 2 vs. 3 – in Class 2A, depending on which poll you look at.

“We need to win this one if we want a top-four seed in the State tournament,” Chavez said. “We’ve got to come ready to play.”

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