DEL NORTE — Del Norte’s girls basketball team will move into the new year and the new school on the right foot.
The Tigers (5-1) dispatched the visiting Panthers (0-6) handily 62-20. Sierra Grande traveled west Friday night in search of their first win of the season. The Panthers played their most competitive game of the year last week against Sargent but couldn’t stretch it four quarters and wilted as the game wore on.
Del Norte was perfect on the season entering the championship round of the La Junta Holiday Shootout. Centauri provided a little perspective to Del Norte clearing the Tigers by 20 points. Friday night Del Norte got back on track.
The Tigers opened the game with a 10-point run. Sierra Grande would answer with four of their own, the remainder of the first quarter was all Del Norte, Tigers leading 24-4. Del Norte senior Kendra Parra chipping in ten points of that.
The Panthers were able to make the beginning of the second quarter more competitive but midway through the second quarter Del Norte laid out an orange expanse for a 15-point run to take a 42-8 lead with time remaining in the half. By then Del Norte Gilbert Sanchez pulled all five starters just before the break.
Back from the locker rooms, Del Norte went right back to work keeping Sierra Grande to three points in the third quarter, those points went to Alexa Ontiveros. Ontiveros would lead the Panthers in scoring on the night with 6 points. The final frame would begin with the running clock in effect. Despite effectively playing three quarters, Del Norte’s Parra still found the time to collect a team-leading 23 points. Parra was followed by sophomore Gabby Jones who posted 11 points in the win.
Sierra Grande will enter 2020 looking for their first win of the year. The Panthers will get a two-game homestand with some pretty good odds. Their opponents over the two-game span, Aguilar and Manzanola, have a combined record of 0-4. Panthers come back Jan. 18th hosting Aguilar.
Having gotten back in the ‘W’ column Del Norte will go to the holiday break. The Del Norte girls basketball team will get the honor of being the first to christen the new gym when they return. After a facing Sangre de Cristo Jan. 11th on the road, Del Norte will host Ignacio (2-2) for the first game in the new gym Thursday, Jan. 16th at 4 p.m.