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Titans star in running for national honor

Citizen Staff Writer



Before Palo Verde’s final regular season home basketball game, Titans senior Amber Cordova was smiling and taking pictures with someone dressed as Ronald McDonald in the stands.

She had no idea what was coming next.

After pregame introductions, Ronald announced to the crowd that Cordova was one of the 1,000 players nationwide nominated for the McDonald’s All-American basketball team.

“All this today was a big surprise,” said Cordova, who was averaging 12.5 points, 5.5 rebounds, three steals and three assists per game entering Friday’s 62-13 win over Santa Rita.

“It didn’t click and I was taking pictures with him (before the game). It makes me feel proud. I want to thank all my coaches and everyone that has supported me.”

Cordova has helped lead the Titans to a 20-4 mark after Palo Verde finished .500 last season.

“I’m beaming with pride and it couldn’t have happened to a better person,” Titans coach Eric Brock said. “We all tried to keep it a surprise. She can make everyone else better around her.

“She will pass the ball to the next person and let them take over for that game. She would rather have a pass for an assist as to scoring a bucket.”

Cordova finished with 11 points and seven assists Friday.

“Amber is a contributor to the team,” said fellow senior Cindy Miranda, who had a game-high 16 points. “She works hard for the wins and that motivates all of us to work hard.”

Cordova, who has received interest from Brigham Young and Hawaii, will have to wait until Feb. 19 to find out if she was selected to the McDonald’s team.

“Playing with Amber has been a great experience,” teammate Jennifer Medina said. “Being able to say that I’m her teammate, I’m very proud.”

Boys basketball

Sabino had a simple game plan for Sahuaro on Friday. It involved not getting beat by the 3-point shot.

Sabino’s defense was up to the task in a 69-61 win over host Sahuaro in a Class 4A Kino game.

Sabino also did the job on the boards in the final two quarters, outrebounding the Cougars and refusing to give Sahuaro second chances.

“It was hard sometimes,” said Sahuaro coach Peter Fajardo. “We thought we had blocked out four and here comes one guy out of nowhere to grab the board.”

Sabino led 30-29 at halftime.

“Most of their baskets in the first half were off second chances,” said Sabino coach Timothy Batten. “We were sloppy defensively and fouling a lot . . . (but) we’re hard to handle on the offensive side because of our size.”

Six-foot-4 John Lohmeier (20 points) and 6-8 Matt Korcheck (15) led Sabino. Six-foot-2 guard Joey Cantando added 10 points.

The teams were tied at 46 after three quarters, but Sabino grabbed the lead for good when Dimitri Chonis buried a 3-pointer in the fourth quarter for a 49-46 lead. The Sabercats were able to protect the lead behind the shooting of Lohmeier, who tallied 13 points in the quarter.

Sahuaro also had three players in double figures. Dior Ford led with 15 points, Dustin Quinn had 14 and Anthony Jones notched 10.



Titans guard in running for national honor

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