NEEDLES — The Lady ’Stangs varsity basketball team ripped through three opponents over the past week; posting lopsided NIAA 2A South League wins over Laughlin, 56-26; and The Meadows, 56-17; before adding a 53-14 non-conference win over Bullhead City’s Mohave Accelerated Learning Center in The Corral Dec. 10.
Freshman Jordyn Breaux scored 16, senior Page Murch 14 and junior Marie Mills 13 in the NIAA opener against Laughlin. Senior Valentina Limon added three three-pointers.
Needles finished the first quarter up 16-7; led 28-15 at the half and 37-22 after three quarters of play but could only make 20 percent of their attempts from the free throw line; Laughlin’s girls shot 33 percent from the charity stripe.
Free throw performance improved dramatically against The Meadows in the second NIAA game, led by Murch who sank five in six attempts. The senior scored all her points in the first three quarters; by the game’s end Coach Manny Calderon had gone all the way through his bench.
“I was really pleased with tonight’s overall performance,” Calderon said, contrasting the two conference victories. “Everyone, defensively and offensively, showed a lot more patience.
“The last game (against Laughlin) was sluggish until midway through the third quarter. We have a tendency to do that with teams we know we’re better than so I didn’t even mention it today. I just told them to go out and play basketball and they did.”
Mills scored 10, Valentina Limon added eight, Te’ Limon six in the game that Needles led 19-4 after one quarter, 41-11 at the half, 51-15 after three quarters of play.
“They did a great job of moving the basketball around inside and out,” Calderon continued. “Our outside shooters were getting good looks at the basket and knocking them down. Our inside game was working.”
All the Lady ’Stangs got their turn on the court. “Everyone got at least a quarter and a half,” Calderon said. “That was good, to get some of those girls we don’t see too often some playing time … you never know when you’re number’s going to get called.”
Mills scored 22, Murch 16 in the girls’ third game with MALC, a team they had beaten handily, twice, in the River Valley tournament the week before.
Needles led 23-4 after one quarter, 33-8 at the half and 49-10 after three quarters of play.
Mills, Breaux and Valentina Limon all practiced their three-point shots with Mills sinking four. The junior added five two-pointers in the first period. Murch stuck with her inside game. There were only two trips to the free throw line in the entire game with Mills sinking the only one made out of the four shots taken.
The girls were set to hit the road this week; traveling to Lake Mead on Tuesday for an NIAA game then down to Parker on Dec. 17 in a non-conference outing. Fans can see their Lady ’Stangs at home on Dec. 18 in a varsity-only NIAA game against Mountain View that’s scheduled to tip off at 4:30 p.m. They host Lincoln County on Thursday, Dec. 20, in the last game before the Christmas break: the junior varsity start at 3, the varsity at 6 p.m. PST.