By Kevin Wilson: PNT Staff Writer
One team will be dealing with contrast, another working with confidence.
Both of the Portales teams expect good pre-district challenges in this weekend’s Portales Shootout, which includes eight games between eight different teams. The action starts Friday and Saturday at 3 p.m., with each day featuring four games.
The final two games of each night feature the Portales teams. Friday will see the Portales boys face Wingate in a 6 p.m. game and the Portales girls facing Kirtland Central afterwards. Saturday finds the Portales girls playing Los Alamos at 6 p.m. and the Portales boys facing Artesia to close out the weekend.
Tickets for each day are $5 per person, with no season passes accepted.
Portales boys coach Mark Gallegos said that playing Wingate and Artesia will certainly give his team a pair of different styles to battle. The Bears, Gallegos said, are a running team with 3-point shooters everywhere. However, he said Wingate can play half-court basketball if it needs to.
“They’re going to run,” Gallegos said. “They’re all capable of shooting the three. All five guys have the green light.”
Artesia, meanwhile, will play more of a power game with 6-foot-5 post Landry Jones.
“We wanted to play two different styles,” Gallegos said, “and I think it’s going to be good for us.”
Having the home games will be a welcome occurrence for Portales (5-6), which dropped two of three games at the Stu Clark Tournament in Las Vegas, N.M.
The Portales girls (8-5) are also coming off of a loss, but Portales coach Brenda Gomez was more than happy with the split that Portales got in the Plateau Classic in Clovis last weekend. The Lady Rams upset 5A Gallup and dropped a 45-34 decision to Clovis in the event’s title game.
“We played Clovis pretty well, and I thought Clovis played well against us,” Gomez said. “I’m excited with the way we’re playing and with the effort we’re giving.”
Gomez admitted that she didn’t know too much about what Kirtland Central and Los Alamos will bring to the table, but felt that Portales would be OK.
“I think that we can play our game against either one,” Gomez said, “and that’s to push it up the floor and look to kick it out.”