HONDO – No matter who was on the court for Hondo, Carrizozo’s boys’ 51-50 win over the Eagles – at the Eagles’ Nest – was just what the doctor ordered as far as Grizzly coach Trampus Pierson was concerned.
“For us to get a win right now is a huge thing,” Pierson said. “We didn’t play a perfect game and still made a lot of dumb mistakes, but I congratulated the boys on beating Hondo for the first time in the six years that I’ve coached here.”
Carrizozo (2-9) trailed for most of the first half, their only lead coming when a Jared Guevara three-pointer gave the Grizzlies a 20-19 lead with 2:52 left in the second quarter.
But while they trailed, they were never that far back, and were able to take the lead back and hold it in the third quarter.
That lead didn’t last, however. Hondo (1-7) took the lead back in the fourth on a free throw by Porfirio Romero with 3:43 left, and maintained it for the next two minutes.
When Orion Wyatt tied it back up at 44-all on a jumper with 1:57 left, the Grizzlies had momentum.
“We got really sloppy in the third quarter, we’re not a fast-paced team,” said Hondo coach Ben Sanchez. “They want to look back and see how fast the teams were before, we’re just not there, not yet.”
Carrizozo went on a 7-2 run and was just able to hold off a determined Eagle team the rest of the way.
Detrick Autrey led the way for Carrizozo with 12 points, while Jacob Narvaez added 11 and Jared Guevara had 10.
Romero had 17 points to lead the Eagles before fouling out.
Just as important for the Grizzlies – possibly even more – were the 11 rebounds hauled in by Guevara, while Autrey brought down four.
“I was impressed with our defensive inside game tonight,” Pierson said. “Detrick stepped up and played really hard, so did Isaiah Ysasi and Dominic Barela. Detrick is so strong, once he gets his hands on the ball, it’s like a vice.”
Big second half
After finding themselves up by just 10 points at halftime, the Hondo girls outscored Carrizozo 16-6 in the third quarter in an eventual 54-23 rout.
The teams were tied at 4-all after the first quarter, and Hondo coach Adam Romero was at a loss to explain his team’s sluggish performance to start.
“That’s what I discussed with them at halftime. We weren’t playing hard, we weren’t doing what we’re taught,” Romero said. “In the third quarter, we came out and did what we were supposed to. I have no clue what happened in that first half.”
The Eagles (2-6) got it into gear after halftime, led by Nina Hererra’s 18 points and 11 rebounds.
“We didn’t play as a team right away, we didn’t communicate well,” Herrera said. “Coach yelled at us at halftime, and we figured out what needed to be fixed and did it in the second half.”
Melisa Barela had eight points to lead the Grizzlies.
“They’re getting better, they’re still very young,” said Carrizozo coach George Vega. “We had two good quarters, but then two bad quarters.”
Carrizozo and Hagerman both have a break before returning to the court, Jan. 4, for the Capitan Smokey Bear tournament.
Hondo’s boys, in particular, have a rough road, taking on Hagerman in the first round on the side of the bracket which also includes Magdalena and Gateway Christian.