KINGMAN - If there was any tension about getting past Parker and into the Division IV, Section III tournament, it disappeared quickly for Lee Williams. The Vols trounced the Broncs from start to finish Thursday at LWS, 66-28, and are the No. 4 team in the sectional.
"For me it was really nice," said LWHS boys basketball coach Ray Smith. "I got to play everybody, and I got to see a lot of different combinations. Every group that went in played good defense."
Things got off to a slow start. It took nearly three minutes for the first points to be scored on a 3-pointer by Lee Williams's Nate Cottrell. The Vols started steamrolling nearly two minutes later after Giancarlo Narvarte flushed his first of two one-step dunks that got the crowd into the game. That led to the Vols finishing the quarter on a 9-2 run and leading, 14-5.
Lee Williams (10-9, 3-3) them put serious heat on Parker (5-13, 2-4) in the second quarter. The Broncs had difficulty doing two things and that allowed the Vols to lead at the half, 42-10. Parker's passes were constantly being stolen by Lee Williams, and the Broncs were adamant about taking on the 6-7 Narvarte in the paint. Narvarte had seven blocks in the first half and eight for the game.
Cottrell, who finished with five points, said determination and attention to detail were responsible for the Vols' defensive efforts.
"We were hustling a lot more and getting to our spots where we were supposed to be," the senior guard said. "It's the first time we played our game in a long time."
Cottrell had many of the steals and stepped up his game compared to his recent outings. He said the fact that section was on the line had a lot to do with the inspired Volunteers.
"The last few games I was off, but I just got that out of mind and played the game," he said. "We were all pumped up for section. It's our first time making the playoffs."
Another welcome sighting for Lee Williams was Braxton Burgess's shooting. He made four 3-pointers and finished with a game-high 25 points.
"We can play defense. We work hard on it," Smith said. "And as good as we play defense, if we shoot well, we're going to be a bear."
Marco Antonio Narvarte scored 14 points for Lee Williams. Chaise Shropshire contributed 11, Kael Juelfs added four, Giancarlo Narvarte finished with four, and Timothy Parker had two.
Lee Williams takes on No. 1 seed Mohave (12-5, 6-0) at 7 p.m. Thursday in Parker. The T-birds defeated the Vols Jan. 28 at LWHS, 36-32. The winner plays the River Valley (12-5) and Joy Christian (10-8) winner at 7 p.m. Saturday, also in Parker. The Section III tournament winner gets an automatic berth into the D-IV state tournament.