Peñasco girls off to a strong start
The Peñasco girls basketball team nabbed second place in the Ben Lujan Tournament at Pojoaque High School this weekend, giving them a 7-2 start to their season.
To open the tournament, the Lady Panthers played the 4A Bernalillo Lady Spartans Thursday (Dec. 20). Their 70-53 win brought them head-tohead with the Santa Fe Indian School on Friday.
The Lady Panthers’ performance Friday (Dec. 21) against the Lady Braves of the Santa Fe Indian School demonstrated real determination. The Braves, the third-ranked class 3A team in New Mexico, had a double-digit lead, but the Panthers refused to quit.
To bring themselves from behind to the tight 49-47 win, the Panthers dialed it up on defense. Though they were outscored in each of the first three quarters, in the fourth they were able to score double the 12 points of the Santa Fe Indian School.
Coach Gilbert Manzanares kept his players focused when the going was tough and drew up the final game-winning play to Carly Gonzales who played her reliably excellent game. The real difference in this comefrom-behind win was likely Adrianna Tafoya who elevated her play to meet the demands of the game.
In the championship round, the 2A Lady Panthers took on the first-ranked team in 4A and tournament hosts, the Pojoaque Valley Elkettes. It was the Elkettes who took home the trophy after their 51-37 win.
Coach Manzanares has set a challenging season for his players, consistently putting the Lady Panthers up against bigger schools. As they rise to meet difficult opponents, they increase their preparation and cohesiveness for their district games later in the season.
Peñasco Lady Panther Adriana Tafoya puts up a shot during the Lady Panther victory over Santa Fe Indian School Friday (Dec. 21) during the Ben Lujan Tournament at Pojoaque High School.
Peñasco Lady Panther Adriana Tafoya driving to the basket during the Lady Panther victory over Santa Fe Indian School Friday (Dec. 21) during the Ben Lujan Tournament at Pojoaque High School.