Salpointe and Sahuaro both won handily Tuesday, which means they are one round from facing each other for the third time this season.
The Lancers, the No. 2 seed of the 4A state playoffs, defeated visiting Goodyear Desert Edge 50-16 while Sahuaro, the No. 3 seed, took care of Phoenix Thunderbird 58-43 at home.
The Cougars (16-1) host No. 6 Flagstaff and Salpointe will face visiting Deer Valley, the No. 7 seed, on Friday night at 7 in the quarterfinal round. If Sahuaro and Salpointe win, they will meet in the semifinals next Wednesday at Salpointe.
Salpointe (16-1) was led Tuesday by Jaya Nelson, Kylee Callahan and Tessa Hastings, who outscored Desert Edge’s entire team. They combined for 38 points.
Nelson had 14 points and seven rebounds, Callahan tallied 12 points and six steals and Hastings had 12 points, five rebounds and three blocked shots.
“Madi Namanny and Bria Medina were also crucial to our win and just tough defensively,” Salpointe first-year coach Joseph Luevano said.
“We did an incredible job as a team defensively. We only surrendered 16 points and only five in the second half to a team that is averaging 44 points a game. Their best player (Haley Montano) is averaging almost 18 points a game and we held her to nine points. It was a strong defensive performance from everyone. We played balanced on offense and shared the ball. It was a good night to settle into the playoffs.”
4A: No. 3 Sahuaro 58, No. 14 Thunderbird 43
.@_SHSgirlhoops advances into the second round of the 4A #state playoffs after a win over Thunderbird and will face #Flagstaff. Here’s postgame reaction from coach Botkin and forward @alyssajb_23. https://t.co/MiuQnjyaj5
— Troy Hutchison (@THutch1995) March 10, 2021
6A: No. 10 Rincon/University 50, No. 7 Gilbert Highland 43
Edie Cotton finished with 12 points and Sonia Almana added 10 in Rincon/University’s upset of Gilbert Highland on the road.
“It was a great win for our girls,” Rincon/University coach Darryl Carlson mentioned. “We played hard. The biggest key was we shut down (Highland’s) two tall girls. We never quit and played smart.”
The Rangers (12-3) withstood a late Highland rally to advance to the 6A quarterfinals where it will travel to face No. 2 Valley Vista (14-1) on Friday at 7 p.m. The Monsoon beat Boulder Creek 74-33 in a first round game Tuesday.
In Rincon’s win over Highland, Kendall Jeong and eight points and Hannah Allred (six points) and Maddie Greene (four) rounded out the scoring.
5A: No. 5 Flowing Wells 59, No. 12 Canyon View 45
With multiple players who can step up at different times, @LadyCabsBBall is preparing to make a deep postseason run coach Michael Perkins is familiar with in his 16 years leading the program. #asthssports https://t.co/laBGdsKFOz
— Javier Morales (@JavierJMorales) March 10, 2021
5A: No. 8 Gilbert 40, No. 9 Sunnyside 21
From Phoenix-based writer @bbowyer07: Sunnyside @LadyDevil_Hoops battled Gilbert in the opening round 5A playoff game but injuries took a toll on first-year coach Justin Delgado’s team. They vow to return stronger next year. The story: https://t.co/Hy5TfS9hEV
— AllSportsTucson.com (@AllSportsTucson) March 10, 2021
3A-6A GIRLS BASKETBALL FIRST ROUND
(3A) No. 2 Snowflake 64, No. 15 Sabino 33
(4A) No. 2 Salpointe 50, No. 15 Desert Edge 16
(4A) No. 3 Sahuaro 58, No. 14 Thunderbird 43
(4A) No. 3 Deer Valley 52, No. 10 Pueblo 30
(5A) No. 5 Flowing Wells 59, No. 12 Canyon View 45
(5A) No. 8 Gilbert 40, No. 9 Sunnyside 21
(5A) No. 3 Millennium 73, No. 14 Cienega 26
(5A) No. 3 Verrado 64, No. 15 Catalina Foothills 34
(6A) No. 10 Rincon/UHS 40, No. 7 Highland 33
(6A) No. 3 Xavier Prep 56, No. 14 Tucson 42
FOLLOW @JAVIERJMORALES ON TWITTER!
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.