TEXICO — Texico’s three-pronged attack was more than enough to stave off Tucumcari’s long-range bombing Saturday night.
Sophomore Lucas Walthers scored 20 points, junior Seth Bailey had 17 and senior Brett Anderson scored 15, accounting for all but six of the Wolverines’ tallies in a 58-47 District 6-2A victory over Tucumcari.
The win leaves the Wolverines (24-2, 5-1 district) in a tie for the regular-season title with Santa Rosa, which beat Clayton 58-45 on Saturday night. They’ll determine the top seed for next week’s tournament in a 6 p.m. playoff game on Monday at Tucumcari.
Texico bolted to a 9-1 lead in this one and the Wolverines led the entire way. Still, Tucumcari (7-16, 1-5) kept it from being a runaway with eight 3-point baskets, including four by freshman guard Travis Garcia.
“I was surprised at how well they shot the ball,” Wolverines coach Richard Luscombe said. “I thought they kept themselves in the game with their 3-pointers.”
Luscombe said the Wolverines played fairly well. Anderson led a domination of the boards and almost surely had a double-double; in addition he had five of Texico’s 17 assists on 25 baskets.
“We did a real good job of executing early,” Luscombe said. “We kind of got the shots we wanted.”
Senior forward Curtis Simpson scored 19 points for Tucumcari, which was coming off a 67-62 overtime upset of Clayton on Friday night, while Garcia finished with 12. Simpson, who had three 3-pointers, scored all of the Rattlers’ points in a first quarter which ended with Texico in front 18-13.
“He kept us close when we were struggling early,” Rattlers coach John Span said of Simpson. “He’s starting to come on these last few games.
“We played hard, (but) they’re so danged big and they work so well inside.”
Tucumcari got within two points late in the first quarter, then cut a 12-point deficit to 31-26 late in the half after Garcia hit a pair of 3-pointers and Jakus Martinez added another.
Texico came out strong in the third quarter, though, going on a 16-5 run capped by Anderson’s 3-pointer that made it 49-33 with less than two minutes left in the quarter.
Texico girls 47, Tucumcari 11 — The two-time defending Class 2A state champion Lady Wolverines, already assured the top seed in the district tournament, held Tucumcari (5-19, 0-6) to one field goal — a third-quarter 3-pointer by Laura Fought. The Lady Rattlers, though, did go 8-for-8 from the foul line.
Junior Victoria Richards led the well-balanced attack for Texico (20-6, 5-1) with nine points. Six players had one 3-pointer each for the Lady Wolverines.
Texico led 25-2 at halftime.
“Rebounding has hurt us the last two games, so we worked hard on that tonight,” Texico girls coach Ryan Autrey said. “We got some second and third opportunities because we had people going to the boards.”
Tucumcari, seeded fourth, will play at Clayton on Monday in the tournament. Texico will host the championship game at 6 p.m. Friday.