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November 26, 2022

Basketball | Covid disrupts game schedules for Monterey County teams

MONTEREY COUNTY — Covid-19 has altered the sports schedule again, forcing basketball teams from all over Monterey County to shut down or postpone games.

More than 10 games across the Pacific Coast league have been either postponed or canceled.

Last week Scotts Valley shut down all sports for a week due to Covid-19 within the sports department. For the South Monterey County teams, multiple games have been affected.

Soledad Aztecs

Early last week Soledad High boys’ varsity team had a member test positive, forcing them to postpone their games this week against King City, Gonzales and St. Francis. The Aztecs were set to face King City in their league opener.

This is the second time a game between Soledad and King City was scratched. The first was back in the second round of the Everett Alvarez Eagle Classic tournament, which was canceled due to a player testing positive for Covid.

The Lady Aztecs were set to play against Everett Alvarez on Jan. 7, but that game was postponed as well. They were to begin league play at home on Jan. 11 against St. Francis and then on Jan. 13 at Carmel.

According to Soledad Head Coach Nick Twitchell, the teams would know more information on Monday, after press deadlines, about when the Aztecs might return to the court.

King City Mustangs

After their season opener with Soledad got postponed, the King City Mustangs had their eyes set on Marina Mariners to start league play on Jan. 6. The Mustangs’ defense jumped on Marina right away, causing turnovers and building out to a big lead early on.

“That’s what we love to do, apply pressure when needed,” said King City Head Coach Henry Ventura. “At the same time, we can play steady defense when needed.”

King City enjoyed an early 20-point lead at the half. Leading the way for the Mustangs was Jjey Martinez, who scored a team high of 19 points, while Adan Garcia scored 14 points and Branden Villasenor finished with 10.

The Mariners made it interesting in the second half, cutting the Mustangs’ lead down to 10, but it wouldn’t be enough as King City won, 62-42.

The Mustangs will have two home games this week against Watsonville on Jan. 11 and Gonzales on Jan. 13.

Just like the boys’ team, the Lady Mustangs had their league opener against Pajaro Valley postponed.

Looking for a fresh start in league play, the Lady Mustangs’ defense came alive against Santa Catalina as they didn’t score more than nine points in a quarter through three quarters. King City’s Victoria Hamilton led the team with eight steals.

The Lady Mustangs got out to a 22-9 lead at the half and didn’t look back, winning 59-34.

King City had three players scoring double figures: Gisela Contreras with 15, Samantha Richardson with 13 and Julia Mendez with 12.

The Lady Mustangs will be in action again on Jan. 10 against Pacific Collegiate, and on Jan. 13 when they travel to Gonzales.

King City’s defense helps the Mustangs get off to a 20-point lead early against Marina on Jan. 6. (Jason Gallardo/Staff)

Gonzales Spartans

Gonzales High boys’ varsity team started league play with a loss to Marina Mariners, 60-34, in their league opener on Jan. 4.

The Spartans were then scheduled to face Soledad on Jan. 6, but due to Covid-19 within the Aztecs program, the game has been postponed.

Gonzales will have to travel for both games this week. On Jan. 11 they will face Rancho San Juan, and on Jan. 13 they will travel to King City.

The Lady Spartans continue to look for their first win of the season, but Pajaro Valley was too much for them as they fell 56-44 in their league opener. The bright spot for the Spartans was Angel Martinez, who scored 30 of Gonzales’ 44 points.

The Lady Spartans will be in action again on Jan. 11 as they host Rancho San Juan, and on Jan. 13 when King City comes to town.

Greenfield Bruins

Greenfield Bruins boys’ varsity team are still trying to find their way, as they dropped both league games against Watsonville and Rancho San Juan.

In their 69-39 loss to Rancho San Juan, Greenfield’s Anthony Martinez scored 23 points.

The Bruins only have one game schedule this week against Soledad, but due to Covid, that game might be postponed.

The Lady Bruins continue to dominate, winning both of their league games against Pacific Collegiate and Rancho San Juan.

In their first two league games, the Greenfield girls have outscored their opponents, 111-33.

The Lady Bruins will have to travel to Pajaro Valley on Jan. 13 before returning home to play against Santa Catalina on Jan. 18.

Jason Gallardo
Jason Gallardo is the sports reporter for King City Rustler and Salinas Valley Tribune, a unified publication of Greenfield News, Soledad Bee and Gonzales Tribune. He covers high school sports for South Monterey County.

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