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Artesia, Roswell, Lovington and Goddard; District 4-5A teams are getting ready for act two

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Artesia’s Kyrah Gonzales drives against Lovington during the first half of district play in Artesia. Friday both teams meet again in Lovington. (Greg Brown Photo)

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ARTESIA — Part one is over with. Now the basketball teams that make up District 4-5A are getting ready for part two.

On the girl’s side of things, Artesia and Lovington are tied for first at 2-1, while Roswell and Goddard are tied as well with 1-2 records.

“The first half of district went pretty good for us,” said Jeff Houghtaling head coach of the Lady Dogs. “Considering we had one home game and two road games, there’s a lot of parity in the district this year.”

Artesia’s lone home game in the first part of league play produced a win over Lovington.

“Got a win on the road at Roswell High, but then suffered a loss in overtime to Goddard at their place against a pretty tough team,” Houghtaling said.

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Regarding last Friday’s loss at Ground Zero, Houghtaling said, “an overtime loss is nothing to be upset about, Goddard is really good, they were the favorite coming into the district. I’m pleased with the first half of the district season.”

The second half of league play for the Lady Dogs starts Friday at Lovington at 5:30 p.m. The boys will play at 7 p.m.

Is Houghtaling expecting to see the same game plan that he saw in Artesia?

“It’s hard to say, I think everybody will twist up their game plans a little bit,” he said.

“I’m certain that nobody was completely satisfied with how things went,” he added. “Lovington has been doing a lot of stuff differently. They’ve been playing a lot of things to try and throw off the district teams off their normal routines.”

Houghtaling doesn’t see the offensive side changing much. The defensive side will be another story.

“I can see each time trying to do different things here and there, maybe gain a little advantage is how we go down the last half of the district season,” he said.

Houghtaling said playing Roswell and Goddard in Artesia will help his team keep the momentum that they had during the first stanza of league play.

“It’s always a little easier to play at home than on the road,” he said. “Roswell, Goddard and Lovington are always difficult places to play, they always do a fine job defending their home courts.”

“I like to think our home court will have a little advantage there,” he added. “Honestly I think we’re just going to work on the things that got us here (and) try to continue to get a little bit better at each one of those things offensively and defensively.”

He said Artesia has been, “playing really hard, the girls have got a great coachable group and I’ve talked with a lot of coaches who have a lot more experience than I have and they say their best seasons come when they have kids that are coachable and more fun to be around and I certainly have that group.”

While Artesia travels to Lovington on Friday, Roswell will entertain Goddard at the Coyote Den.