The Ignacio High School girls basketball team has looked forward to a showdown with Del Norte all season, as the Bobcats had a shot to take down an undefeated Tigers team that came into the game ranked No. 1 in the Colorado High School Activities Association's latest Class 2A poll.
The Bobcat offense struggled from the floor for the second consecutive game and fell short in a 51-29 loss at Del Norte High School.
Del Norte (16-0, 3-0 2A Southern Peaks League) played solid defense in the first half, as IHS was shut out after the first quarter and was down 19-0.
"We really did come out ready to play, but again, our offense was flat," said IHS head coach Justa Whitt. "We were probably around 2-of-25 in that first half, and that was the game right there. Our defense was there, but we just weren't getting the baskets. It wasn't like we were taking bad shots, but it just was the little stuff that we weren't finishing on, and that all adds up against a team like Del Norte."
Junior shooting guard Kendra Parra scored a game-high 17 points for the Tigers, and Whitt gave her credit for making big shots.
"Going up against a player like (Parra) is tough no matter who you have on her," Whitt said. "She's a phenomenal player, and our game plan coming in was to try and shut her down, but she just kept finding ways to get open and was very creative in her movements off of the ball. I thought we did a good job defending her, but like I said, she's just a phenomenal player."
With the Bobcats down 26-7 at half, Whitt needed someone to step up. Freshman Avaleena Nanaeto answered the call.
"Avaleena was great for us tonight on defense, especially in the second half," Whitt said. "Go along with Kiana Valdez, too, and if you take Parra out of the equation, and it's a really even game."
Ebonee Gomez led the Bobcats (11-5, 10-0 2A/1A San Juan Basin League) with eight points, Shelcie Gosney had five, while Makayla Howell and Jayden Brunson had four.
IHS will return to league play when it will travel to Ouray (7-6. 4-3 SJBL) at 3:30 p.m. Saturday.
Boys BasketballDel Norte 45, Ignacio 40The Ignacio High School boys basketball team had a rare off night in the final quarter Thursday in a 45-40 road loss at Del Norte.
The Bobcats (8-8, 6-2 SJBL) have had a strong second-half turnaround thanks to grinding out fourth quarters of close games, but the IHS offense fell flat at the wrong time Thursday. The Bobcats mustered six points in the final frame, and, despite having good looks, could not get shots to drop.
"It was just young team mistakes, really," said IHS head coach Chris Valdez. "I thought we played pretty well considering we were in a tough situation with some things that have gone on this week. We had to shuffle our plans, but we hung in there, we really did."
Bryce Finn led IHS with 13 points, while Ocean Hunter had seven despite playing sick. Triston Thompson had five points. IHS was without starting point guard Brady McCaw.
The Tigers (10-6, 3-0 SPL) were led by Kade Glover, who finished with a game-high 19 points, as he hit five shots from beyond the 3-point arc, while Izeah Peterson had 10 points.
IHS will take on Ouray (10-2, 6-1 SJBL) in a crucial conference showdown at 5 p.m. Saturday.