SHS basketball teams starting to put it together


Lady Warriors can rely on more than Silva

Socorro High School’s girls basketball team is getting busy.
Today’s (Saturday) home game against Tohatchi is the Lady Warriors’ third game this week, and they have four more to look forward to next week.
“It’s not a bad thing for us,” coach Joseph Garcia said on Thursday, Jan. 7. “Having games this week will help us get back in shape. We played five games during the break and four of those were at the beginning of the break.”

“It (fatigue) might take its toll by the second game of the Hope tournament, but I think if you asked the girls right now they’d rather be playing games than practice.”
Two of the games during the busy stretch are makeup games. Saturday’s game against Tohatchi was postponed because it conflicted with the Warriors football team was playing the state championship game at home. Next Tuesday’s (Jan. 12) game at Ruidoso was rescheduled due to a December snowstorm.
The Lady Warriors (7-3) have been busy racking up wins since the beginning of the break. Their 79-37 win at Bernalillo on Tuesday, Jan. 5, was their sixth in a row.
Socorro was powered once again by Roxanne Silva in the rout over the Spartans. Her 45 points were just two short of Audra Major’s school record 47.
Silva surpassed Major as the school’s all-time leading scorer earlier this season, and she’s about to break another one of Major’s marks. Headed into Friday night’s home game against Ruidoso, Silva was 14 rebounds shy of Major’s record 1,175 rebounds.
“She’ll break that this week,” Garcia said. “She averages 12 rebounds per game, so if she doesn’t do it Friday, she’ll get it Saturday.”
Silva was unstoppable while scoring 19 second-quarter points. He had tallied 31 by halftime when Socorro went into the locker room with a comfortable 45-27 lead.
That wasn’t enough for Garcia, who teaches a tenacious pressing defense, which often results in easy offensive points. He was seeing too many easy lay ups on the other end of the court.
“The first half we gave up 12 lay ups on them breaking the press,” he said. “At half, we made one minor change on our press. We made a little correction and that helped.”
The Warriors shut down Bernalillo in the second half, holding the Lady Spartans to nine points in the third quarter and just one in the final frame.
With the game in hand, Silva contributed just three points in the final eight minutes.
While Silva is racking up records in her senior season, Garcia is quick to point out that there’s a good team forming around her.
“We’re starting to come together,” he said. “Last year teams could really focus on Roxanne and just try to shut her down. Now, we’ve got three other girls they have to be concerned about and that makes us harder to defend.”
The three other threats the coach was referring to are senior guard Brittany McDaniel and juniors Jaden Jones and Kianna Gonzales.
The coach noted that Jones finished in double figures for the third straight game, scoring 11 points against Bernalillo. Meanwhile, McDaniel tallied eight points to go along with seven assists and three steals. Gonzales chipped in seven points.
Making significant contributions in other ways were Tristen Peralta and Samantha Sedillo. Though Peralta didn’t score a point, she did dish out six assists. Sedillo scored just four points, but she had six rebounds and four steals.
While Silva will almost certainly break the rebound record this week, coach Garcia is just as likely to meet another milestone.
The win over Bernalillo was the 349th of his coaching career.
“That just shows I’m an old man,” quipped Garcia, who is in his 20th year as the Lady Warriors’ coach.
Garcia said Saturday’s varsity game against Tohatchi should start about 3 p.m., and Tuesday’s game against Ruidoso is scheduled for 7 p.m.
After that, the Warriors will open a tournament at Hope Christian in Albuquerque on Thursday, Jan. 14, with a first-round game against Mora.


Improving boys team attends Shootout

After a slow start — partly due to the football team making it all the way to the state championship game — Socorro High School’s boys basketball team seems to be beginning to gel.
The Warriors scored a 65-51 victory at Ruidoso on Tuesday for their third win in their last four games. That left them with a 4-6 overall record after a 1-5 start.
“We’re playing better basketball, right now,” said SHS head coach Lawrence Baca before practice on Thursday, Jan. 7. “We haven’t been turning the ball over too much, and we’re getting guys to step up and be productive in different aspects of the game.”
Baca noted that two players registered double-doubles — registering double digits in two statistical categories — in the win over Ruidoso.
Zach Esquivel looked just fine after dislocating his shoulder for a second time this season. He scored 15 points and grabbed 10 rebounds. Erik Garcia scored 11 points and had 10 assists.
Coming off a 36-point performance in which he drained 10 treys in a loss at Tularosa, Socorro’s Jared Marquez scored a game-high 17 points against Ruidoso.
“He’s just a great shooter,” the coach said. “If you give him a little space, he can be dangerous.”
Socorro helped itself in another aspect of the game by shooting 78 percent (14-for-18) from the free throw line. Marquez was perfect on four attempts. Garcia made 5-of-6 free throws.
“Our goal is to shoot 70 percent or higher, and I think for the season we’re right at that,” Baca said.
Ruidoso jumped out to a 6-0 lead, but, sparked by the 3-point shooting of Michael Contreras, Socorro quickly overcame the deficit and kept pulling away the rest of the game.
Contreras made a trio of treys in the first quarter to give the visitors an 18-15 lead at the end of the period. Socorro, which outscored the home team in every period, led 33-28 at halftime and won the second half, 31-23, to secure the win.
Mario Valero scored 15 points to lead Ruidoso, which fell to 3-7 on the season.
The Warriors hit the road again to participate in the Portales Shootout. They played another streaking team, Artesia (6-5), which won its last four in a row, on Friday night after El Defensor Chieftain press time. Socorro meets the host school Saturday afternoon.
“Artesia’s one of the top-ranked teams in 4A and Portales is one of the top-ranked teams in 3A, so they’re going to be tough games,” Baca said. “But our whole schedule has been tough all year, and that’s good. It’ll prepare us for later on.”
After returning from Portales, the Warriors have eight more games before the start of district on Tuesday, Feb. 2.
The Warriors’ next home game is Saturday, Jan. 16, 7 p.m., when they host Wingate.