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Lady Pirates remain unbeaten

Staff Writer

SUN photo/Pat Artis Lady Pirate Payton Shahan, a junior, puts up a shot at Saturday night’s home opener against the Sangre de Cristo Thunderbirds. Shahan scored nine in the 67-44 victory, giving the Pirates a perfect 6-0 record on the season.

SUN photo/Pat Artis
Lady Pirate Payton Shahan, a junior, puts up a shot at Saturday night’s home opener against the Sangre de Cristo Thunderbirds. Shahan scored nine in the 67-44 victory, giving the Pirates a perfect 6-0 record on the season.

Add two more solid wins to the book for the Pagosa Springs Lady Pirates.

The girls’ team tallied two more victories over the weekend, besting their opponents by a total of 135 points scored and 80 points allowed — a difference of 55 points.

Thus far on the season, the Lady Pirates have scored 373 points while allowing 167.

The first of the weekend’s wins came Friday night against Ignacio on the Bobcats’ home court.

The Pirates outscored the Bobcats in all four quarters of the game — 12-8, 24-5, 15-11 and 17-2 — leading to a final score of 68-36.

“We got off to a slow start again,” coach Wes Lewis noted, adding that slow starts are a continuing trend from last season. “I would like to get going earlier.”

But, the Pirates heated up in the second quarter to take a 23-point margin into the second half, which they increase to 32 points by the final buzzer.

Despite the scores, coach Wes Lewis said the Bobcats made the Pirates work for every point.

“I thought Ignacio was physical with us,” he noted, adding that the Pirates gave up too many rebounds.

En route to that 32-point victory, Lewis said the team made got to Ignacio with its press, made the easy baskets, and shot well.

“Like all our games this year, we’re so balanced in scoring,” Lewis said. “Everybody’s scoring and contributing.”

Payton Shahan led the Pirate offensive effort with 13 points, followed by Emily Bryant with 12.

Anissa Lucero followed close behind with 10 points, including 2 three-pointers, and Taylor Strohecker and Taylor Lee-Hammer each added nine, including two three-pointers from Lee-Hammer.

Six points each were added to the scoreboard by Madison Lewis and Morgan Schaff, as well as two points from Brennan Nicholes and one from Shannel Wilson.

The team went 14 for 23 from the free-throw line on the night for a success rate of 61 percent.

The team turned the ball over 16 times and rebounded 28 times — 15 defensive and 13 offensive.

Saturday, the girls hosted their first home game of the season against the Sangre de Cristo Thunderbirds and were victorious with a 67-44 final score.

Sangre de Cristo is the No. 10 2A girls’ team in the state, and their ability was on display Saturday.

The Thunderbirds scored first, and outscored the Pirates 12-11 in the first quarter.

It wasn’t until the final minute of the second half that the Lady Pirates gained a 10-point lead over their opponents, taking a 28-18 lead into halftime.

“It was good for us to be trailing,” Lewis said, adding it meant the girls had to keep fighting.

Pagosa picked up steam in the third quarter, however, outscoring Sangre de Cristo 27-10 in the quarter to take a 55-28 lead, but were outscored by the Thunderbirds in the fourth quarter 16-12, giving the Pirates a 67-44 victory on the night.

“I wish we could play them again,” Lewis said. “I think playing a team like that will make us better.”

Bryant and Strohecker each tallied 14 points on the night, followed by 11 from Madison Lewis.

Shahan notched nine points in the game, while Lucero landed two three-pointers and Schaff added six points of her own.

Lee-Hammer contributed four points on the night, Wilson added two and Nicholes notched one.

The Pirates went 11-for-19 from the charity strip for a free-throw percentage of 58.

Pagosa lowered its turnover total to 11 for the game while recording 30 rebounds — 19 defensive and 11 offensive.

While stats for the number of free-throws garnered by Sangre de Cristo was unavailable Monday, Lewis noted it was too many for the Pirates to give up.

“Several foul calls were pretty questionable that led to the free-throw line,” he said.

With the two wins, the Lady Pirates remain No. 2 in CHSAA rankings, behind Holy Family (7-1).

Centauri dropped to fourth in this week’s rankings, behind Lamar. Both Centauri and Lamar are 6-0 on the season.

In the Intermountain League (as of Monday), Pagosa and Centauri are the two remaining undefeated teams, followed by Alamosa at 4-3, Bayfield at 1-2 and Monte Vista at 2-4.

Following a holiday hiatus, the Pirates will return to action on Jan. 3 with a home matchup against the Del Norte.

randi@pagosasun.com

This story was posted on December 26, 2013.