(Tucson, AZ) In the 520 Sports Talk Spotlight Game of the Week, there was a collection of high flying athletes from both Amphi and Palo Verde.
Both teams were the AIA 4A top ten. This match up figured two teams with freak athletes that can jump out of the gym, making for a compelling duel of athleticism.
The game lived up to the hype from the tip-off. Yet, Palo Verde got off to a fast start and out in transition. Amphi being the home team battled back and traded bask for basket all the way to half time where it was a one-point deficit going into the half.
During the first half, Amphi’s senior guard Jackson Ruai put on a show scoring 15 of his teams 28 points in the first half. Ruai was all over the place causing havoc offensively and defensively.
Palo Verde would not be out done with the scoring combo of senior guards Sandoval and Thomas. The two guards combined for 19 points in the first half to keep the Titans in the tough road test.
The was a different energy in the gym at the start of the third quarter, the Amphi Panthers came out of the locker-room eithfire in their eyes. They turned up the defensive intensity forcing Palo Verde to take bad shot after bad shot, there was hardly any easy shots for the Titans in the third quarter.
Before Palo Verde knew it Amphi built up 34-27 lead which was the largest lead at that point of the game. From that point on Amphi was able to hold a six to nine-point lead for most of the game. Besides not handling the pressure that Amphi put on, Palo Verde also took quick and ill-advised shots that help Amphi maintain their lead.
One major bright spot for Palo Verde was Sandoval who finished with 30 of his teams 59 points, he was scoring it from all spots on the court. Still, there were times in the game where it felt like he was trying to do a little to much in key pivotal moments of the game.
Not to be out done Amphi’s Jackson Ruaifinished with 20 points and had three monster slam dunks in the game making a statement that this was the Panthers night and not the Titans. Jackson got some major help in the second half from teammate and senior guard Davis who was a great passer and finished the night with 19 points, the duo combined for 39 of Amphi’s 70 points.
In the end, Amphi was too much for Palo Verde 70-59.
This game was a battle of two athletic giants in the city of Tucson and is only game one of two between the two schools. The most exciting part about Tuesday’s game is that the two team will be playing against each other soon on January 21st in the MLK Classic at McKale Center.