By Greg Perkins
It took until the fourth quarter, but Snowflake’s Lobos found a way to extend their season and their pursuit of back-to-back titles with a three-point, come from behind win over Moon Valley last Friday night. The 15th seeded Rockets defeated 18th seeded Cholla Magnet on Tuesday to advance to meet the second seeded Lobos, who earned a first round bye.
Both teams struggled to score in the first period, ending the quarter knotted at 8-8. In the second Moon Valley built a seven-point lead and extended it to nine heading to the fourth period.
With their title dreams in doubt, the Lobos clamped down on defense and found their stride on offense, outscoring the Rockets 24-12 over the final eight minutes to keep their season alive with a 59-56 win.
The Lobos were led by Kurt Wood with 16 points. Jordan Gardner added 12 with 14 rebounds. Kegan Bjornn also had a double-double with 12 points and 12 rebounds. Trey Schneider added 8 points; Ty Pawlick, 6; and Tyler Claridge, 5.
With the victory the Lobos pushed their stellar season mark to 29-3. They will face 10th seeded North Canyon in the elite eight round at 3 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 25, in the Gila River Arena in Glendale. With a win, they would see either No. 3 Scottsdale Christian or No. 6 Window Rock at 3:30 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 26. A second win in Glendale would put them back in the title game on Saturday, Feb. 27.
The remaining three of the top five overall seeds are still alive in the upper half of the bracket, including No. 1 Estrella Foothills, No. 4 Winslow and No. 5 Mingus.
By Greg Perkins