MARICOPA — The past four games haven’t been ideal for Rams girls basketball as their closest loss was to Tucson High by 18 points. Maricopa had their sights on ending their four-game losing streak in a 6A Desert Southwest sectional matchup against Yuma Cibola.

However, the Rams (2-8) couldn’t put an end to their losing streak as they had no answer on both ends of the court in a 56-25 loss to the Raiders (8-1).

In the first quarter, Maricopa hung with Cibola, as the Rams trailed by three going into the second quarter. The Raiders were feeling the defense from the Rams, but the Raiders capitalized on second-chance opportunities. Then, in the second quarter, Cibola found its rhythm and Maricopa couldn’t get going.

After keeping the game close in the first quarter, the Rams didn’t score a point in the second quarter. The Raiders went on a 9-0 run throughout the quarter to send themselves into halftime with a 23-11 lead.

“Defensively, we had a good first quarter.” Maricopa coach RaShawn Calvert said. “After the first quarter, we just crumbled. I couldn’t tell you what it was today. We weren’t here as a team.”

It didn’t get any better after halftime for Maricopa. The Rams put up points, but they ended up allowing 22 points in the third quarter. After scoring seven points in the third quarter, Maricopa didn’t find any late game momentum to carry into the next game, scoring seven points.

Even though Maricopa couldn’t get baskets to fall, senior Shakaiya Irving and senior Evone Santiago led the way with seven points. Irving was the game’s leading rebounder with nine and sophomore Haylee Brown finished with six. Also, Brown showed off her defensive ability with two blocks.

Leading the way for the Raiders was Madison Mathews, Ariana Luera and Sierra Bomhower, scoring 10 points each. Rofi Hoffmeyer flirted with a double-double with nine points and led the Raiders in rebounds with eight. Myna Johnson chipped in eight points and eight assists.

When the Rams had chances for points, they couldn’t make it count. Maricopa shot 1-for-9 from the free-throw line. The lone made free throw came from the sophomore center, Brown. The Rams turned the ball over 17 times to the Raiders, but Cibola ended up winning the turnover margin by two.

“We weren’t here whatsoever,” Calvert said. “Offensively, defensively and our hustle, where we are so accustomed to seeing every game, wasn’t there. We talked about, but we just have to move on, because we’ll be back at it again with another game.”

With a short turnaround, the Rams hope to get a different result as they’ll be hosting Surprise Paradise Honors on Friday with a shot to put an end to their five-game losing streak.

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