Crownpoint loses at home to LA, 103-28

By Quentin Jodie
Navajo Times

CROWNPOINT, Dec. 20, 2012

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(Times photo – Paul Natonabah)

TOP: Crownpoint’s Nicolas Chischilly (5) drives past Josh Paytiamo (22) of Laguna-Acoma during Tuesday’s non-district prep basketball game at Crownpoint High. The Hawks defeated Crownpoint, 103-28.

BOTTOM: Laguna-Acoma’s Anthony Carpio (21) misses a dunk attempt against Crownpoint’s Tyson Charley (23) during the first period action at Crownpoint High Tuesday night. The Hawks ran past the Eagles, 103-28.

The only thing the Laguna-Acoma boys basketball team didn't do on Tuesday night was dunk the ball.

The high-flying Hawks made quick work of Crownpoint and posted a 103-28 lopsided win over the Eagles.

"The Lord has blessed me with a really good team," said second-year Laguna-Acoma coach Ryan Piel. "These guys really worked well together."

For much of the first quarter, the Hawks pestered Crownpoint with its full-court press that led to many wide open looks at the basket.

On three of those trips, the Hawks made an attempt to power the ball through the hoop with a dunk. Each time though, they couldn't get enough air under them, but still the audience applauded their efforts.

"That was the first time we had a chance to try it again," said Laguna-Acoma guard Anthony Carpio, who went 0-for-2 on dunks on Tuesday night.

Still the 5-foot-10 guard finished the game with 17 points, which included 15 in the first half as the Hawks led 68-15 at the break.

Laguna-Acoma had three other players that scored in double figures in the first half. Senior Austin Jones put in 16 of his game-high 18 points in those first two quarters.

By the end of the game, the Hawks had six players in double figures with Jones and Carpio leading the way. Augustus Cuch and Josh Paytiamo both finished with 15 points while Elijah Ruben and Cameron Riley added 12 and 11 points, respectively.

"It's kind of hard to gauge us right now," Jones said when asked if they are on pace to challenge last year's 24-1 record. "It's too early, but I think his weekend we'll find out where we're at."

The Hawks are entered in the Pojoaque tournament this weekend and will play Raton in the first round today. Piel said his team will be playing some of the top northern schools, which include a mixture of 2A and 3A schools.

"Two of the schools (entered) are in the top 10 in 3A," Piel said. "That is going to be a good test for us."

Piel said he scheduled that tournament as way for his team to prepare for state. Last year, the Hawks were ranked No. 1 for much of the season and entered the Class 2A playoffs as the favorites with a 23-0 record before No. 9 Texico ousted them in the second round by a 77-76 count.

"Everything we do is to gear up for state," Piel said. "What we do now and what we did for the summer is all focused on March. It's about getting better for what we know is coming in March.

"These guys want to get back there to the Star Center and even play at the Pit if we can get there," he added. "Hopefully we can put on a display there."

In Tuesday's game they made an impression on a few folks, including Crownpoint coach Shawn Miller.

"Yeah, they are pretty good, but I think my kids have the same talent as Laguna, but they have to find it in themselves to play," he said. "As coaches we see it in practice and we see it everyday, but tonight we didn't show up."

Rashaan Beyale led the Eagles with 14 points.

Miller said his team knew what they were going up against, but after falling behind 8-0, they "had no confidence whatsoever."

"By looking at their faces, it seemed like it was going to be a game," he said. "But once they (Laguna-Acoma) took off everything hit the fan."

The Eagles are scheduled to meet up with Rehoboth today in the opening round of the Wingate tournament.

Miller said this year's field includes Miyamura, Thoreau, Tohatchi and Wingate.

"If we can get the W we have a chance of playing Wingate again," Miller added. "We played them at our place and we lost (the game) by four points."

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