Dora boys’ home streak extended to 23

Kevin Wilson

The Dora boys basketball team has done a lot of things over the last few seasons: won a Class 1A championship, ended a 30-year EPAC title drought and they have a former player (Matt Carpenter) playing for the Eastern New Mexico men’s team.
There is something the Coyotes haven’t done lately, though — lost at home.
Dora earned its first victory of the season Saturday, edging visiting San Jon 51-49, which moved the Coyotes’ winning streak to 23 games at Guy Luscombe Gymnasium.
The last time the Dora boys lost at home was the 2000-01 season, when eventual state champion Melrose came for a district matchup.
With what amounts to a brand-new roster this year, Dora coach Ty Thatcher said the streak is the last thing on the minds of his players.
“We’re pretty much just trying to get things together right now,” Thatcher said. “They’re working hard, but they just played a strange game the other night.”
The Coyotes were led in scoring in Saturday’s win by J.R. Gonzales, who is averaging about 16 points per game.
“He’s shooting about 70 percent,” Thatcher joked, “and I can’t get him to shoot.”
The home streak will live for at least another week, as the Coyotes hit the road. Dora plays its next home game Dec. 20 against Logan, which is coincidentally the last Class 1A team to beat the Coyotes.

Five area hoops squads are getting ready for tournaments this weekend. The Portales girls, coming off a 66-40 win over Roswell Tuesday night, have a 5 p.m. game today against Del Norte in the first round of the Mel Otero Invitational in Rio Rancho.
With a win, the Lady Rams (2-1) would likely face the defending tournament champion, Dallas-based J.F. Kimball. Portales coach Brenda Gomez said that Kimball would be a challenge, as it is full of quick, athletic players.
Other teams starting tournaments today include the Floyd girls hosting the Floyd America Tournament, Elida heading to the Farwell Invitational, and both Dora teams (boys at Tularosa, girls at Abilene, Texas).

With a 9-2 record against Class 3A teams, a 5-0 mark against District 4-3A teams, and its third state championship in four seasons, the Portales volleyball team has plenty to celebrate.
Portales had four of the eight members of the All-District 4-3A first team, voted on by the district’s three coaches. Seniors Erika Cook, Kassandra Richards and Kelly Parkey joined Megan Kabrick on the first time, while three Lady Rams (Amy Truelock, Amy Archibeque and Morgan Hill) earned second-team honors.
North-South All-Star selections, however, are a different story. The North-South teams, which are made up of seniors from Classes 3-5A, only have one 3A representative — Hot Springs defensive specialist Gina Goetz, who will play for the South. Hot Springs was eliminated in regionals by Lovington.
The area will be represented in the 1A-2A North-South game, however, as Elida’s Keisha Chenault earned a selection to the South team. The matches will be played July 27 in Albuquerque.
Kevin Wilson can be reached at Kevin_Wilson@link.freedom.com