Tucson High School Sports

MLK Classic: Palo Verde Shows Seamless Transition with Transfer Angel Addleman in Her Second Game


Senior guard Angel Addleman appears as if she has played games with Palo Verde all season, not just two games since she became eligible after transferring from Pusch Ridge before the school year.

By the looks of it, after Palo Verde’s 60-49 win over Rio Rico today at McKale Center in the MLK Classic, the Titans’ chemistry remains in sync with the addition of Addleman. The good times are continuing to roll with Palo Verde improving to 3-0 in the 4A Gila and 11-8 overall.

Addleman had 11 points in today’s win after scoring 19 in her first game with the Titans last week, a 47-21 win over Amphi.

“Actually, it hasn’t been too complicated; I feel like the team is really warm and welcoming,” said Addleman, who was joined in the transfer from Pusch Ridge with her younger sister Alivea Addleman. “Any time you come into a new situation, it can take a bit of time (adjusting with new roles) but I feel our team has really blended well together.”

One of the Titans who has had to make the most adjustment with her role is junior guard Kiana Ortiz, who went from being the focal point of Palo Verde’s offense as the primary ballhandler to now being on the receiving end of passes and scoring more.

Kiana Ortiz (Andy Morales)

Ortiz, with her older sister Aaliyah Ortiz (formerly of Palo Verde and now a Pima freshman) in the stands at McKale, had 18 points against Rio Rico.

“We needed a spot to fill because I would be the ballhandler but I need to be faster and she has the speed,” Kiana Ortiz said. “She has the handles and she can get through people really easily and she has an IQ. Playing with her is like playing with my sister.

“We lost Aaliyah from last year and now we have Angel. It’s a good fit.”

Palo Verde is atop the 4A Gila with Rio Rico now at 2-1, tied with Douglas. The Titans host Walden Grove tomorrow before traveling to Douglas on Thursday.

“Just make sure we continue to do what we do,” Palo Verde coach Mario Ybarra said when asked about his team’s mentality with such a busy schedule this week. “Continue to grow, become a team, do the little things correctly … We want to continue to build the chemistry and make a good push for the state tournament.”


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ALLSPORTSTUCSON.com publisher, writer and editor Javier Morales is a former Arizona Press Club award winner. He is a former Arizona Daily Star beat reporter for the Arizona basketball team, including when the Wildcats won the 1996-97 NCAA title. He has also written articles for CollegeAD.com, Bleacher Report, Lindy’s Sports, TucsonCitizen.com, The Arizona Republic, Sporting News and Baseball America, among many other publications. He has also authored the book “The Highest Form of Living”, which is available at Amazon.

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