FAIRFIELD — A strong start gave way to a disastrous second quarter and the Armijo High girls basketball team never recovered, falling 62-50 to visiting Deer Valley in a nonleague tilt Saturday night at E. Gary Vaughn Gymnasium.
The Indians (10-6) led 19-13 after some stellar passing by Sade Ware and Justice Robinson-Kroon to find Kianna Simms on the wing for a 3-pointer with 6 minutes, 45 seconds left in the half.
But that was as good as it got for Armijo, which suffered through a 17-2 Deer Valley run to close out the half down 31-21.
Also hurting the Indians, forward Melaya Gaines was in foul trouble all night and spent much of the game on the bench – she still finished with 10 points, but the team missed her presence in the middle.
“They got control of the game in the second quarter with free throws missed and Melaya getting in foul trouble,” said Armijo coach Christian Stoll. “Those are the two things I saw was just too many missed free throws and Melaya being in foul trouble really hurt us.”
The Indians also shot just 16 for 37 from the free throw line and 4 for 18 in the first half.
Helping the Indians to the early lead, Justice Robinson-Kroon scored 10 of her game-high 17 points in the first quarter, but the Wolverines held her to just one 3-pointer in the second half. She also pulled down eight rebounds/
As the Armijo shooters went cold, Deer Valley heated up, hitting 8 of 17 floor shots for a 20-7 second quarter.
“The second quarter was a big swing quarter. We kind of had control of the game and then we kind of stuck in 21 there,” Stoll said. “We couldn’t get a bucket to fall and missed a lot of easy baskets.”
Armijo shot 21.9 percent form the floor in the first half and 23.1 percent for the game.
Deer Valley, meanwhile, never let up despite going through a four-minute scoring drought in the fourth quarter.
In the final minutes, the Indians started hitting their free throws and climbed to within six at 56-50 as Gaines knocked down a pair and Robinson-Kroon hit three of her final four, but six straight foul shots by the Wolverines in the final 29.1 seconds put it out of reach.
Despite the loss, Stoll wasn’t too worried about his team’s overall play.
“I think we’re playing well, we just had some bad breaks tonight,” he said. “A lot of missed free throws and missed layups, we get a steal at the end of the first half for an open layup, we miss it and then foul. That was a huge swing right there. Things like that happened to us all night, so I’m not too discouraged about the overall way we’re playing.”
Reach Mike Corpos at 427-6979, or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/mcorposdr.