by David Tesitor
TRINIDAD — The La Veta Redskins competed at the TSJC basketball tournament last weekend winning their opening round match-up against rival Hoehne Farmers in easy fashion, 57-43, and setting themselves up against the Trinidad Miners in a game which was the toughest matchup of the tournament.
La Veta opened strong against the Miners and took a 12-9 lead into the second quarter, but it was a strong defense and the hot shooting of Jared Hernandez of Trinidad which opened up the game and put La Veta behind for good. Trinidad outscored the Redskins 23-6 in the second quarter and took a 31-18 lead into the locker room.
The second half saw more of a defensive style of play without much offense generated. La Veta could not overcome the deficit and they lost to Trinidad, 68-52.
The loss pitted the Skins against the Devils of Springer, NM to determine who would capture the third place trophy. It wasn’t the Redskins’ afternoon as the Devils outplayed La Veta throughout the game and walked away with a 63-52 point win.
On the girls’ side of the bracket, the Lady Redskins were outpowered by the Hoehne Farmers, 49-47, in the opening game. Hoehne opened up a wide margin in the first quarter and never needed to look back, 18-7. Throughout the entire game, La Veta was held to single digit points in all four quarters. It is tough to win a game when a team has a poor shooting percentage from the floor. La Veta went 10 of 34. Ashton Rinker scored 13 of the team’s points while Rene Trujillo scored 8.
In the consolation round, the Lady Redskins met the John Mall Panthers and won 39-17. Defensively, the Redskins knocked the Panthers off their dominance under the boards, pulling down a total 47 rebounds. Twenty-two defensive rebounds by La Veta did not allow the Panthers any chance to follow up on missed shots under the nets which helped contribute to the low scoring performance of the Panthers.
Rene Trujillo pulled down 14 boards and was also the high scorer of the game with 16. For her efforts, Trujillo was chosen player of the game.
The victory over the Panthers gave the Redskins a chance to finish the tournament in fifth place, a respectable finish given the tough level of competition. They needed to get past the Des Moines Demons however.
Des Moines had a game plan which was to come out shooting and open a wide lead with the man-to-man defense. The game plan worked well because the Demons blew open the game early and took a commanding 20-9 first quarter lead. From there it was a defensive struggle by both teams to keep pace with one another and the Redskins were unable to catch up. By the time the final buzzer sounded, the Redskins had lost the game, 48-30, to capture sixth place.
La Veta will open their regular season in a game against the Primero Bulldogs in Weston tomorrow and will host Centennial Saturday with tipoff at 1 pm.