The Navajo Lady Indians finished the Hammon tournament with two wins and one loss to earn a third-place finish

By Ryan Lewis -

For the most part, the Navajo High School girls’ basketball team has been unstoppable during the 2017-18 basketball season. Before Dec. 19, the team’s only loss had come in Arkansas. Since that time, the Lady Indians have added two more losses to their record and both came at the hands of the Hammon Lady Warriors.

The most recent loss came Friday night when Navajo fell to Hammon by a score of 46-43 to get bounced to the consolation bracket of the Hammon basketball tournament.

It was a game that Navajo could have won after taking a 14-5 lead in the first quarter, but the Lady Warriors refused to submit, going on a run of their own to take a 22-20 lead into halftime.

Though the Lady Indians came out firing in the second half, retaking the lead at 33-30 heading into the fourth quarter, it was Hammon who would gain the upper hand and came away with the win with a three-point make at the buzzer.

Coach David Doss said one of the biggest issues for Navajo was free throw opportunities.

“We had a tough time getting to the line,” Doss said. “Hammon only had five fouls the entire game. Otherwise, we had a decent shooting night, going 13-for-24 from two, 5-for-18 from three and 2-for-3 from the free throw line.”

Gracee Bates led the team in scoring with 11 points while also pulling down seven rebounds. Kalee Cross also had seven rebounds while chipping in six points.

Emmy Cobb scored nine, Tabitha Armstrong had eight and Reilly Avila finished with six.

The loss moved the Lady Indians into a third-place matchup with the Beaver Lady Dusters on Saturday. The outcome for that game was much different than against Hammon as the Lady Indians took apart the Lady Dusters 54-38 to earn a third-place finish in the tournament.

Navajo began the game slowly, leading by just three points after one quarter, but the Lady Indians blew it open in the second and pulled away from Beaver to a 26-16 lead as the game headed into halftime.

Both teams added 12 points in the third quarter to give Navajo a 38-28 lead after three and by the end of four, the Lady Indians had outscored Beaver 16-10 to win the game by a score of 54-38.

Bates dominated the game with 17 points and 17 rebounds while Cobb had a solid all-around game with 14 points, six rebounds, three assists and two steals. Armstrong also had 14 points while going 6-for-8 from the free throw line.

Doss said he was proud of how his seniors played overall.

“Our three seniors really stepped up,” Doss said. “It was our third game in three days and although shots weren’t falling like they could, our defense was pretty good as we held Beaver to 38 points.”

The Lady Indians finished 4-of-22 from the three-point line and 13-of-36 from two. Additionally, they made just 16 of their 26 free throws.

Other contributors were Cross who scored five points, pulled down seven rebounds and had five steals, Avila who had seven points and Gabby Kille who had three.

Navajo is now 10-3 on the season and will host Burns Flat at 6:30 p.m. tonight.

Reach Ryan Lewis at 580-482-1221, ext. 2076.

By Ryan Lewis

Reach Ryan Lewis at 580-482-1221, ext. 2076.

Reach Ryan Lewis at 580-482-1221, ext. 2076.

comments powered by Disqus