By Dave Wagner
It’s been a few years since the Portales High girls basketball squad has faced Sudan, one of the premier small-school programs in west Texas.
The teams meet in a 6 p.m. (MST) tipoff today at Sudan, but PHS junior Rebekah Gonzales admitted the Lady Rams don’t have much information about their opponent.
“All I know is they don’t have much height,” the 5-foot-3 guard said with a smile.
The Lady Rams (7-8), who played well against Kirtland Central and Las Vegas Robertson in the PHS Shoot Out last weekend, figure to be tested by the Hornettes (17-2). Sudan, ranked second in Texas Class 1A, is coming off a 50-26 victory at district rival Farwell on Tuesday night.
If nothing else, the Clay Stout-coached Hornettes should be fundamentally sound.
“They’re very disciplined,” Farwell girls coach Doug Boyd told the Clovis News Journal after Tuesday’s game. “They’re like little robots. They do everything they’re supposed to do.”
Junior post Britney Bryant led three Hornettes in double figures against Farwell with 20 points.
“They’re supposed to be guard-oriented,” Lady Rams coach Brenda Gomez said. “Mark Gallegos (PHS boys coach) saw them play in the Shallowater tournament and said they have one really good post player.
“We haven’t played them in quite a few years. I’m not familiar with their kids, but I know (Stout’s) program is very structured. We’re going to have to play good to make a game of it.”
PHS will be without junior Megan Kabrick, who sustained a pulled groin in Saturday’s 49-44 win over Robertson in the Shoot Out. She’s also likely to miss Tuesday’s home game against Roswell Goddard.
Gomez said freshman Bethany Self will probably step into Kabrick’s spot in the starting lineup.
Gonzales said her older sister’s PHS squad played Sudan several years back and lost to the Hornettes.
Still, she and the Lady Rams have been making steady progress trying to fill in for graduated starters Roni Gomez, Erika Cook and Kassandra Richards.
“At the beginning of the year, I was nervous about filling the shoes of Roni, Erika and Kassandra,” Gonzales said. “But now I just go out and play the way I play.
“It was exciting to beat Robertson, although we had a good lead and almost lost it.”
Gomez said her team is still trying to hit its stride with the District 4-3A schedule approaching.
“What bothers me is we’re still at a point where we don’t know how we’re going to play,” she said. “But I feel this last weekend we put together two really good games — not 32 minutes each game, but more better (moments) than not.”