Girls’ basketball improves to 3-0 in district play

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By Phil Scherer

As their junior seasons move along, Becca Green and Natalie Gallegos continue to improve and become more deadly near the basket. Saturday night against Taos, the duo dominated the undersized Tigers, leading the Hilltoppers to a 53-27 victory.

Last season, the duo played key roles on the Hilltopper varsity team, but struggled to understand their offensive responsibilities, leading to mistakes.

With head coach Lanse Carter teaching them the correct way to play near the basket, LAHS has developed into a state tournament contender, thanks in large part to the play of its matchup-wrecking forwards.

Playing a largely-undersized Tigers’ team at Griffith Gymnasium, Green and Gallegos made their presences felt early and often, combining for all 14 Hilltopper points in the first quarter. In transition, Green was unstoppable, and in the halfcourt offense, Gallegos was perfect, scoring when Green was double-teamed.

LAHS jumped out to a 24-14 halftime lead, and there was never any doubt of who was in control. Green and Gallegos each had 10 points at the half, combining for 20 of the team’s 24 points. The other scoring output came from Alex

Calderon, who has emerged as a top guard for LAHS thanks to her ability to handle the ball and finish at the basket.

The Hilltopers extended the lead to 38-24 heading into the final quarter as Carter brought several of his lesser-used players into the game for extended playing time. This included junior varsity standouts Sam Archuleta and Jenna Harris, both of whom had an impact in the game.

With the game well in hand, the Hilltoppers cruised to a 53-27 victory in which 10 different players made it into the scoring column. Green led the team with 17 points, while Calderon and Gallegos each scored 11 points.

LAHS, which is now 9-12 overall and 3-0 in district play, will return to action on the road 7 p.m. Friday in Moriarty to begin the second rotation of district play.

The Hilltopper are currently in competition with Pojoaque Valley for the top spot in District 2-4A, as both teams are currently undefeated.