Superior junior Nathan Duarte scored a game and season-high 26 points in the Panthers’ 54 – 44 victory against rival Ray last Friday night in Kearny.
“(Nathan) He did a great job attacking the zone defense and pulling up for the midrange jumper,” Superior head coach Ryan Palmer said afterwards. “He made 13-of-18 free throws. He played his best game of the year.”
In addition to his 26-point effort, Duarte grabbed seven rebounds and dished out an assist. Senior Julian Navarro led the Panthers with nine rebounds and four steals. Junior Adam Navarrette finished with 10 points, seven rebounds, a pair of steals, and an assist. He was a perfect 6-of-6 from the free-throw line.
The Panthers pulled down 34 rebounds in the win and shot 76 percent from the charity stripe.
“Our rebounding was solid, and we limited our turnovers,” Palmer said. “We made free throws and that proved to be the difference.”
With three remaining games in the regular season, the No. 22 Panthers must win out to have any chance of earning a playoff berth.
“We set goals; however, we need to win out to have a shot at accomplishing them,” Palmer said. “(It’s) not an easy task, but possible. We are finally executing and playing solid basketball, but it may be a case of too little, too late.”
Perhaps, but it’s not over until it’s over.
Up next: Jan. 30 at Arete Prep and Jan. 31 vs. Cibecue/Dischii Biko.