Lady Cats regoup, Cats juggle lineup

Clovis senior Monique Walker shoots over freshman Tori Northcutt during Monday’s practice at The Rock. CNJ photo by Rick White.

Rick White

Clovis coach Miles Watters said it took his team a while to put last week’s double-overtime loss at Hobbs behind them.

The Lady Wildcats, who had their 13-game winning streak snapped in the two-point loss, return to action tonight at home against Carlsbad in the first of three District 4-5A games this week.

Clovis (19-3, 3-1 district) plays back-to-back games Friday and Saturday at third-place Eldorado and Manzano respectively.

“It’s a huge weekend for us,” Watters said. “But it’s not going to mean a thing if we don’t beat Carlsbad (tonight).”

Watters said he’s excited to be playing three games this week after playing just twice in two weeks.

“We’ve had three very nice practice in a row and I think we’re over the loss,” Watters said.

While the Hobbs loss was painful, Watters said the 4-5A race is far from over.

“We’re still in position to accomplish what we want to accomplish,” Watters said.

Watters said the Lady Wildcats will have to play with more composure when they host Hobbs (18-6, 6-0) Feb. 20.

“I was really surprised that we played tight,” Watters said. “We hadn’t played tight all year.”

Clovis boys coach J.D. Isler said the Wildcats will make some changes for tonight’s game at Carlsbad.

Isler plans to move senior post Mario Caswell into the starting lineup and slide senior Justin Pinckney to the wing in an effort to get more size and rebounding in the starting lineup.

Caswell, the tallest Wildcat at 6-foot-5, would join 6-4 junior Dominque Easterlin up front. Undersized to play inside at 6-1, Pinckney is the Wildcats’ leading scorer,

“I feel like we need some sort of spark,” Isler said. “We’ve kind of been in a rut lately.
“When we’re only getting one shot each time down the floor it really puts a lot of pressure on the offense.”

Clovis punished the undersized Cavemen inside en route to a 98-68 win the first time the teams met.

The Wildcats (17-5, 2-2) are coming off a 75-68 home loss to Hobbs Tuesday and are looking up at the Eagles (20-4, 5-1) and Eldorado (13-6, 4-1) in the 4-5A standings with four games remaining.

Isler said not playing for a week after Tuesday’s 75-68 loss at home to Hobbs has been tough.

“After a loss, you want to play again,” Isler said. “After a while, you get tired of dwelling on a loss.”

Game day
Carlsbad (13-8, 0-4)
at Clovis (19-3, 3-1)

When: 7:45 p.m. tonight
Where: Rock Staubus Gym
Last meeting: Clovis beat Carlsbad 53-28.

Clovis (17-5, 2-2)
at Carlsbad (9-13, 0-4)
7:45 p.m. tonight
Last meeting: Clovis beat Carlsbad 98-68.