LOCAL GLANCE (Feb. 22): JUCO basketball, Prep soccer, basketball, baseball
JUCO MEN'S BASKETBALL
AWC falls to Mesa
Marvin Whitt missed a tying 3-pointer at the buzzer as Arizona Western lost at Mesa 55-52 on Friday.
The loss knocks the Matadors (24-6, 19-3 Arizona Community College Athletic Conference) into the No. 3 seed in next week's NJCAA Region I Division I playoff. Had they won and gotten some help, they could have been the No. 1 seed. Instead, they travel back to Mesa to face the No. 2 Thunderbirds (24-6, 19-3) at 7:30 p.m. Thursday.
“I wasn't pleased with our shot selection in the first half, and we didn't work hard enough to get it into Tanner (Clayton) and Carlos (Perez),” coach Charles Harral said. “We did a better job of doing that in the second half, but give credit to Mesa's defense for part of that. I don't care who we face in the playoffs, and I like our chances — even though we're going on the road. However, no matter who we play, we have to shoot the ball better.”
Whitt finished with 13 to lead the Matadors. Clayton had nine points and nine rebounds.
JUCO WOMEN'S BASKETBALL
AWC loses finale
Mesa scored the first 10 points Friday and never looked back in a 59-43 home win over Arizona Western.
The loss will give the Matadors (22-8 overall, 14-6 ACCAC) the No. 3 seed in the NJCAA Region I Division I semifinal. They'll head to Douglas to face No. 2 Cochise on Wednesday, with the winner facing Central Arizona on Friday.
Three AWC players all missed time in the first half with injuries: Samantha Wallace (ankle), Lisette Longomo (ankle) and Imari Lyons (wrist). All returned.
“We dug another big hole, and if that happens again next Wednesday, it's going to be a one-game (playoff) season,” coach Patrick Cunningham said.
Emilie Muandibu had 10 points and 10 rebounds for the Matadors.
Huizar GVR POY
Kevin Huizar was named player of the year to lead four Kofa players on the Gila Valley Region Coaches All-Region First Team.
San Luis coach Ian McDougall, who led the Sidewinders into the AIA Division I semifinal round, was the coach of the year.
Players on the first team were San Luis' Antonio Carrion, Raul Ordorica, Marlon Atondo and Leo Moreno; Kofa's Huizar, Ivan Mosqueda, Edgar Leyva and Frank Mallek; Cibola's Carlos Reygoza, Andres Salcedo and Ernesto Avila; and Gila Ridge's Michael Ostiguin.
Making the second team were Cibola's Edgar Rios, Ivan Miranda and Francisco Urenda; Gila Ridge's Fernando Avila, Mario Robles and Horacio Hurtado; San Luis' Arturo Palomino, Javier Espinoza and Andres Elizalde; Kofa's Jesus Felix; and Yuma High's Jairo Diaz.
Mitchell, Rodriguez, Brazeel make first teams
Cibola point guard Jordan Mitchell and Yuma Catholic point guards Madison Brazeel and Carter Rodriguez made their respective all-section first teams, which were announced Friday.
Rodriguez and Brazeel made the Division IV Section I first team, while YC center Matt Pistone made the second team. Mitchell was first team in Division IV Section I, with Raider center Steven Loucks making the second team.
San Pasqual loses in 7th
Ajo scored two runs in the bottom of the seventh in a 12-11 win Friday over San Pasqual.
The game was intended to be a doubleheader, but it went almost four hours on the lightless Ajo field.
Alfonso Nunez and Andrew Lomaintewa each had three hits for the Warriors.
Gila Ridge defeats Brophy
Victor Castro spun a six-inning gem Friday leading Gila Ridge to a 3-1 win over Brophy Prep.
Castro danced around some jams after walking two and hitting two batters, but his defense helped him out with three double plays.
“It was a low-scoring game,” Gila Ridge coach Greg Osowski said. “Victor came out and pitched very well. He had a few base runners but otherwise let his defense make plays for him.”
The Hawks have two more games Saturday against O'Connor and Chandler.
Cibola falls to Mesquite
After scoring a run early, Cibola failed to muster up any more offense and fell to Mesquite 6-1 Friday.
The Raiders' lone run came when Allen Vega hit a double in the first inning, advanced to third on a wild pitch and was driven in by Rogelio Varela on a ground out.
Starting pitcher Kristiain Valenzuela earned the loss, giving up five runs on seven hits over four innings.
“We started off real well and we kind of died out in the middle of the game,” Cibola coach Duane Evans said. “We hit the ball very well in the fifth and sixth, hit some balls really hard.”