2009-10


 

 

Isn’t it great to go to a basketball arena and, in one place, watch elimination game after elimination game in person?

That’s the scenario when the quarterfinal round of the New Mexico state basketball tourney starts.

 
Funny thing, though, is that all of these tournaments are really 16-team tournaments. The first round is scattered throughout the state – with girls games being played on Friday and the boys games going on the next day.

It’s the same deal as the next round: The winners advance and the losers go home, so there’s a terrific sense of urgency from both the players and the fans there to watch. It’s an electric energy that sweeps across the facility.

The only problem for New Mexico hoops fans is this…

You get to see only two of those games – one girls game on Friday and one boys game on Saturday.

Wouldn’t it be great to see more than one each day?

It Can Be Done

Without adding an extra round at The Pit and Santa Ana Star Center, to further contribute to the facilities crunch there, how about this? The use of 10 permanent regional sites to be used for the Round-of-16, with the games being played (just like now) on the Friday and Saturday before the quarterfinals.

Of course, this kind of thing would be tweaked, but here’s what the opening weekend would’ve looked like as the 2010 playoffs got underway:

 

The sites would be permanent and each school would be designated a site as its “home” regional.  The same teams would be hosting games (as in the current system), but most of the time it wouldn’t be where they play their regular season games.

You might notice that, in this particular case, the Santa Fe regional has a bonanza of boys games in one day. Seven, in fact. This is do-able though, because the current slate at The Pit and Santa Ana Star Center crams in eight games in a single day.

On the other hand, as the regional sites will be told to expect occasionally, the 2010 regional at Highlands University would have only two boys games on Saturday.

But, hey, two games are still better than one.

Know this guy?
It’s Steve Sanders, Chief of Police for the City of Clovis

 

That’s his day job.
At the EPAC Tournament at night, Sanders looks a little more like this…

 

Hey, isn’t it tough enough to argue with a regular official?
Just kidding Steve…We mean, Mr. Sanders…
Uh, Chief Sanders.
Sir?

Listen close and you can hear the lessons from the cheerleaders along the baseline.

“R-E, R-E-B, R-E-B-O-U-N-D, Re-Bound” (clap, clap) “Re-Bound”

How ’bout this oldie, but goodie?

“R-O-W-D-I-E, that’s the way we spell Rowdy. Rowdy, Let’s get rowdy.”

Well, okay, maybe that last one isn’t such a good example of proper spelling.

And here’s another one (good example – not): “L-E-T-S-G-O, Let’s Go, Let’s Go. L-E-T-S-G-O, (pause) LET’S GO!”

Hey, in the spelling part of that one, whatever happened to the apostrophe?

At the EPAC tournament lies perhaps the best chance to rectify this sad situation, so we think. We happen to know that the Texico cheerleading instructor is an English teacher, so here goes (if we can just get her to teach her troops). It’s a chance to cheer and, as well,  teach proper grammar and punctuation to the spectators at the same time.

Ready?: “L-E-T, A-POS-TROPHY, S-G-O Let’s Go (clap)”

See?

Everybody now…

Ready? O-kay! (clap)

Upon relocating the annual EPAC tournaments to Greyhound Arena in Portales (from Melrose, where games were played the first three days), we felt like our longtime suggestion for the concession stand surely would’ve finally taken hold.

But, alas, the folks at Eastern still refuse to call their hot dogs by the names that would make those babies jump off the warmer: The Hound Dog.

Hey y’all… Eastern New Mexico University’s nickname is the GreyHOUND and surely you should sell hot DOGs at a concession stand. We’re just saying… Gimmicks appeal to hungry college students. Maybe you’d have a few more attend games if, when hit by the munchies, they would say, ‘Hey, let’s go get us a HOUND DOG!”

And watch a ballgame too…

Hey UTEP!, New Mexico State!,
University of New Mexico!

Have you seen this guy play?
We did, at the Clovis tournament, and he’s good.

 

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Some guys are cool as a cucumber when the pressure is on…
Almost like they have Ice Water in their Veins.

Bowie prevails at Clovis Tourney

Celis-Sanchez’ trey with :02 left wins quarterfinal

 

You don’t get to be 13-1 by accident. Though El Paso Bowie may have achieved that record on Monday thanks to a last-second shot, the Bears got themselves in that position by staying even with a taller Abilene Cooper squad earlier in the game.

When it came time for a chance to win at the end, the very end in fact, Bowie senior guard Ramon Celis-Sanchez launched a three with two seconds on the clock. Though he was knocked down and a foul was called, Celis-Sanchez’ shot found nothing but net.

“We knew 21 (Nnamdi Ezenwa) could beat us, so we tried to make someone else beat us,” Abilene Cooper coach Marc Case said. “We made him give up the ball and he (Celis-Sanchez) made the shot.”

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Cooper, with an overall height advantage at most spots on the floor, utilized its assets early and held a lead throughout the first half.

At the buzzer for intermission, Bowie guard Juanito Medrano gave a taste of things to come when he swished a long three-pointer to make the score 25-23.

BOWcluster1COOPcluster1

Led by 14 points from Celis-Sanchez, Bowie seized the lead for the first time when he made a shot with 5:30 left in the third quarter.

The score hit back-and-forth between the squads until the Bears, with 1:15 remaining, took advantage of a foul and a technical foul called on the Cougars.

By the time Bowie stopped shooting free throws, a one-point deficit had turned to a 44-41 lead.

Cooper, however, got a free throw of its own from Michael Brady with 37 seconds left. That was followed by a Brady bucket from the floor to tie the game with 15 ticks remaining. That set the stage for Celis-Sanchez’ winning shot just in front of the Bears’ bench.

Kenneth Lewis led the Cougars with 16 points while Brady and Delvonta Doolittle added 12 and 10 points respectively.

Back to the Bracket!!! 

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Click here for the Clovis All-Tournament Team Selections!

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In our frantic rush to get games covered at the Artesia girls soccer tournament, rushing from field to field to find coaches, players, etc… the folks who organized the hospitality room (and it actually was a room!) came through in the clutch.

Some thoughtful and culinary gifted supporter put together a batch of burritos filled with meat, potatoes and green chile. Sure, we needed a couple of Powerades to douse the flames, but it was a big help to be able to carry something so flavoricious to the next game.

In our frantic rush to get games covered at the Artesia girls soccer tournament, rushing from field to field to find coaches, players, etc… the folks who organized the hospitality room (and it actually was a room!) came through in the clutch.

Some thoughtful and culinary gifted supporter put together a batch of burritos filled with meat, potatoes and green chile. Sure, we needed a couple of Powerades to douse the flames, but it was a big help to be able to carry something so flavoricious to the next game.