Moriarty High School’s girls basketball team lost another close game Feb. 1—this time a 61-56 defeat at Pojoaque Valley.

“We played really well,” Moriarty’s head coach Erin Edwards said of the Lady Pintos’ performance at Pojoaque. “But we got into foul trouble and couldn’t finish.”

In the loss—their fifth in a row—the Lady Pintos had a late 7-point lead that slipped away.

Similarly, Moriarty (7-12, 0-4) had an early advantage in its Jan. 30 home matchup against the Taos Lady Tigers (8-11, 1-1) but that lead also slipped away—and despite a late rally, the Lady Pintos came up short 41-38.

The Lady Pintos opened the Taos game by hitting six of their first 10 shots.

Aneesha Chavez sank the first of her two 3-pointers, Tristen Sauter added a 3, and both Jessica Kaberlein and Hannah Beukelman chipped in a pair of short-range jumpers to help lift Moriarty to a 14-7 lead at the end of the first quarter.

“We came out hot, we were ready to play,” Sauter said. “Our offense, we were running it slow and taking our time.”

“I think our defense was pretty good, too,” Chavez said.

Chavez started the second quarter with a layup to extend the margin to 16-7.

Anessa Chavez squaring up to shoot against Taos Jan. 30. Photo by Ger Demarest.

But the Lady Pintos cooled off and Taos heated up.

The Lady Tigers outscored Moriarty 14-6 in the second quarter, finishing with an 8-0 run to inch ahead 21-20 at halftime.

The Lady Pintos continued their tepid play in the third quarter, turning the ball over multiple times while hitting only one field goal.

Edwards said the Lady Pintos sputtered because they stopped running the offense that had been working earlier in the game.

“They ran it really well at first and then they weren’t disciplined enough to run it in the second half,” Edwards said.

Down 41-30 with two minutes remaining in the game, Chavez started an 8-0 run with a layup, then capped the rally with her second 3 of the game with :15 left on the clock.

But time ran out before the Lady Pintos could get the ball back.

“We were cooking at the end but we just ran out of time,” Sauter said.

Chavez scored a game-high 17 points; Sauter chipped in 8; Kaberlein added 5.

The Lady Pintos host Los Alamos Feb. 7.