Sizzling start powers IHS to 40-point win
With 2:21 remaining in the first eight-minute quarter of play Thursday evening, Jan. 18, senior post and team captain Solymar Cosio was hit with already her third personal foul – a situation Ignacio head coach Trae Seibel normally wishes to avoid.
Substituting her out of the lineup, he did what any basketball coach would have done in such a spot.
But he also didn’t worry much; including an unexpected bank-shot three-pointer with 6:41 left, plus three later free throws in as many tries, Cosio had already netted ten points – of the Lady Bobcats’ eventual 24 before time expired, with visiting Bayfield managing only a free throw by senior guard Genesis Barrera in reply.
Coming with 5:57 left, as a result of Cosio’s second personal, Barrera’s make brought the Lady Wolverines back to 9-1 – the closest BHS would get in what ended up being a 58-18 loss inside IHS Gymnasium.
“It was good to see the girls bounce back after our practice last night,” said Seibel, whose squad lacked regulars Marissa Olguin and DaLaney Wesner. “We were just in our heads, we were missing a ton of shots, our offense wasn’t flowing … . What I wanted to reiterate to them was ‘Hey, next play!’ Keep moving forward, whether it’s a great play or you don’t make a great play – always have that mindset.”
“So, the girls came ready to play tonight and earned this one.”
Including a conventional three-point play with just 4.5 seconds left in the second stanza, chipping IHS’ lead at halftime down to 35-8, Bayfield junior guard/forward Renae Foutz, hounded primarily by Ignacio senior Maci Barnes, battled for a team-leading seven points in defeat.
“Maci always has a job, and her job is to take their best player and put the clamps on her,” Seibel stated. “And everybody else can then do their jobs. We needed the league win; that’s what was most important to me. We’ve got to pick up as many wins as we can in the tough IML.”
Senior guard Darlyn Mendoza-Lechuga sank two threes and totaled nine points during the third quarter – which ended with the Lady ’Cats up 48-16 – and ultimately finished with a game-high 16 points for Ignacio (5-6 overall, 1-2 3A/4A Intermountain). Cosio coasted to a 12-point outing, while Barnes (who got the game started with a three-pointer), sophomore guard Alyssa Atencio and junior forward Victoria Brown each scored seven points.
Freshman Lily Quintana nailed a three and finished with five points, and senior Lauren deKay and freshman Maliyah Martinez booked two points apiece.
“I think we really improved from practice,” said Mendoza-Lechuga. “It was a good game. We fixed our attitude, definitely, and just our ball movement and not giving up on the ball.”
Senior forward Madison ‘Maddie’ Mead scored four points for Bayfield (3-7, 0-3 IML), Barrera ended up with three (via 3-of-6 free-throw shooting), and reserves Sylvia Hesford and Kimball Anderson each tallied two. Bayfield finished 6-of-12 from the charity stripe; with Mendoza-Lechuga going 4-of-7 and Cosio 3-of-3, Ignacio ended up 10-of-16.
The Lady ’Cats are slated to next see action Friday, Jan. 26, in La Jara at Centauri, and remain in the San Luis Valley to visit Alamosa the next afternoon. Bayfield, meanwhile, was to host Pagosa Springs on the 20th, with the Lady Pirates (10-3, 3-0) having won 41-26 at Alamosa (8-5, 2-1) the previous evening.