The game opened as one of the most exciting of the season.
After an 80-38 win over Moriarty on Friday (Feb. 15), the Taos Tiger boys basketball team is now 5-1 for district games and 16-7 overall.
The game opened as one of the most exciting of the season. Taos and Moriarty both played with intensity for every ball, and were experiencing comparable success converting their scoring opportunities into baskets. Both teams played eight minutes of clean, high-energy basketball. The quarter ended nearly even: 14-15 with Moriarty leading by one.
Abruptly, things started the change. Moriarty suffered a few broken plays, and their game collapsed around them while Taos lit a fire under themselves.
The Tigers opened the second period with 3-point shots from Abdul Khweis and Justin Madrid, and the Pintos weren't able to take the lead again for the rest of the game. Noah Armijo, wearing number 42, managed several nice steals, and, in pleasing symmetry, the Tigers ended the quarter the same way they started it - with two 3-pointers, this time both from Derreck Chacon. In the whole of the second period, Moriarty scored 6.
The teams entered the locker rooms with a score of 44 for Taos and 21 for Moriarty.
After the Tigers' 30-point quarter, there was little pressure on Taos for the remainder of the game.
The point gap widened in the third period. The Taos bench saw some playing time, with several 5-for-5 swaps of every man on the court.
After the break between the third and fourth quarters, the Pintos were reluctant to take their place on the court and didn't make their way out of their huddle until repeatedly invited by the referees.
With a score of 34-63, it's hard to blame them for needing a little extra encouragement. Many Taos players had the opportunity to make a basket or two, while holding the Pintos to only 4 points in the final period.
Even without being on the court the whole game, Tigers Madrid and Chacon had 15-point games and Abdul Khweis made 21.
The Tigers travel to Los Alamos to play the Hilltoppers on Thursday (Feb. 21) at 7 p.m. and close out their regular season at home against the Española Sundevils on Saturday (Feb. 23) at 7 p.m.
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