|Amanda Showers makes a layup and one against Ganado in the first round of the Division III girls basketball state tournament Wednesday night in Payson. VVN/Sean Morris|
|Katie Wilson drives to the basket against Ganado in the first round of the Division III girls basketball state tournament Wednesday night in Payson. VVN/Sean Morris|
|The Camp Verde girls basketball team plays Ganado in the first round of the 2013 Division III state tournament Wednesday at Payson HS. The Cowboys won, 50-30.|
|Key stats against Ganado|
|Amanda Showers: 24 points, 7 assists, 5 rebounds|
Katie Wilson: 8 points, 18 rebounds, 2 steals
Maddy Showers: 6 points, 4 rebounds, 2 assists
Rayonna Chatter: 4 steals, 2 assists, 3 rebounds
Caitlin Harris: 4 points
Donnie Buss: 2 assists, 2 steals
PAYSON - The No. 14 Camp Verde girls basketball team handled the No. 19 Ganado Hornets easily Wednesday, 50-30, in the first round of the Division III state tournament at Payson HS.
Amanda Showers scored 24 points with 7 assists and Katie Wilson secured 18 rebounds. Ganado played with intensity, but the Cowboys' offensive skill and team defense proved too much for the Hornets to overcome.
"A lot of us stepped up on the boards," said Wilson. "We limited their best player and our defense was phenomenal tonight. Without our defense, this could have been a close game."
Amanda Showers was the only Cowboy in double figures. Her offensive production has increased over the last few weeks and she's looking more and more confident -- she scored 10 points with four assists in the first quarter. She also committed two fouls early, so sitting for a while cooled off her hot streak.
"Her teammates are getting her the ball in good spots, they're setting good screens, and they're finding the open man. Amanda can't score the way she has all by herself. Ganado's best player averaged 20 points a game, but she tried to do it all herself and she struggled against our defense. Teams can't key on Amanda because we have a lot of girls that can score. It could be Donnie, it could be Katie, it could be Maddy, or Ray. That's the nice part about our team," said head coach Mark Showers.
Ganado HS is about 35 miles away from No. 3 Window Rock, the Cowboys' next opponent. Window Rock beat Ganado by 30 points twice this year.
The Window Rock Fighting Scouts held a No. 1 ranking for a portion of this season, but according to an article by Jose Garcia on the AIA's website, they self reported an ineligible player violation and had to forfeit four games. The article explains those forfeits don't factor into their power point ranking all that much, so they only moved down to No. 3.
In any case, Camp Verde has to beat them to advance.
"We need to play our game, control the flow, keep a high tempo and play great defense to beat Window Rock," said Wilson.
Camp Verde's rank is also deceiving. Last year they were ranked No. 12 and made it to the final four. The Cowboys strength of schedule, playing a bunch of Division II schools, helps and hurts them. It helps because playing good competition makes you better. It hurts because Bradshaw beat them twice and Prescott beat them once, so the Cowboys' power ranking dropped as a result.
All that doesn't really matter. When the ball drops next Saturday at 4:30 p.m. in the Skydome, it's game on.