ROSWELL — The Portales Rams survived Friday night at New Mexico Military Institute, and got an assist from District 4-3A rival Lovington as a three-team race tightened.
Portales (11-11, 2-2 district) jumped out to a 25-11 lead midway through the second quarter and held off the Colts for a 48-36 win.
“It was one of those games where we just had to survive,” Gallegos said. “The kids did a good job of making plays.”
The Colts (0-18, 0-4) closed to within six to start the fourth quarter, but the Rams hit free throws at key times to hold NMMI off.
Daniel Aranda led Portales with 14 points. Chris Adkins added 10 and Jerrod Long had eight for the Rams.
Connor Williamson scored 11 to lead the Colts.
Elsewhere in the district, Lovington secured a win over Ruidoso, which had jumped out to a 3-0 district start.
That means Portales would earn no worse than a first-place tie if it wins its final two district games at home against Lovington (Tuesday) and Ruidoso (Friday).
The Wildcats and Warriors are currently tied for the district’s No. 1 seed.
“We’ve just got to take care of business,” Gallegos said.
Tuesday’s game will be the nightcap of a District 4-3A doubleheader, with the Portales girls hosting Ruidoso in the opener.