Annual APS Metro Championships tip off Tuesday in Duke City gyms

RIO RANCHO, N.M. — All four of the city’s varsity basketball teams are in action in Albuquerque on Tuesday as the first round of the 12th annual APS Metro Championships gets underway.
Action resumes Wednesday and, after a day off on Thursday, semifinal games in the consolation and championship brackets take place on Friday, with the championship round on Saturday.
The Cleveland High boys and West Mesa girls are the defending champs of the annual APS event.
Team by team, here’s how the Cleveland and Rio Rancho boys and girls teams are aligned for the APS tournaments.
Cleveland boys: Off to an 11-0 start and winners of the 61st Hobbs Holiday Hoops Tournament after beating the host Eagles for the second year in a row — the only team other than Hobbs that can make that claim — the second-seeded Storm are the defending champs of the APS event, and also won it in 2015 and ’16 under former coach Brian Smith.
Ironically, the Storm open the tournament at 7:15 p.m. at Cibola, which they beat in the championship games of ’15 and ’16.
The 15th-seeded Cougars also host the 5:30 p.m. first-round game between No. 7 Hope Christian and No. 10 West Mesa.
Tuesday’s losers meet Wednesday at 5:30, and the winners tip-off at 7:15, also at Cibola. If the Storm win both games, they’ll advance to a semifinal game Friday at Albuquerque High at 7:15.
Rio Rancho boys: Coming off their own Holiday Hoops Classic title for the second year in a row, the Rams have apparently shaken an early season three-game skid.
The eighth-seeded Rams will square off against No. 9 Highland Tuesday at 7:15 at Volcano Vista, with the top-seeded Hawks meeting No. 16 Rio Grande in the Ring of Fire at 5:30. Winners meet Wednesday at 7:15, after Tuesday’s losers meet at 5:30, also at VVHS.
Wednesday’s winner heads to Albuquerque High for a 5:30 p.m. semifinal on Friday.
In other venues, with the same format for winners and losers of Tuesday games:
No. 5 Valley meets No. 12 Albuquerque High at 5:30, followed by No. 13 Manzano vs. No. 4 Atrisco Heritage Academy at 7:15, on Tuesday at Valley; and No. 3 Eldorado tackles No. 14 Sandia at 5:30 and No. 6 La Cueva faces No. 11 Del Norte at 7:15, on Tuesday at Sandia.
Wednesday’s winner at Valley slides into the semifinal at AHS on Friday at 5:30, and Wednesday’s winner at Sandia moves into the 7:15 semifinal Friday at Albuquerque High.
The third-place game is at AHS Saturday at noon; the championship game is also at Bulldog City at 4.
Cleveland girls: The sixth-seeded Storm (8-3) meet No. 11 Hope Christian Tuesday at Manzano High School 7:15, following the 5:30 contest between No. 3 Sandia and the 14th-seeded host Monarchs. Tuesday’s losers meet at 5:30, the winners at 7:15 at Manzano on Wednesday.
Wednesday’s winner then advances to a 4:15 p.m. Friday semifinal at Eldorado High.
Rio Rancho girls: The 10th seeded Rams (3-7) meet seventh-seeded Highland for the second time this season on the Hornets’ floor at 5:30 Tuesday, with that game followed at 7:15 by No. 2 La Cueva vs. No. 15 Del Norte.
Tuesday’s losers meet at 5:30, the winners at 7:15 at Highland.
Wednesday’s winner then advances to the 7:15 p.m. Friday semifinal at Eldorado.
The girls’ third-place game is at AHS Saturday at 2; the championship game is also at Bulldog City at 6.
For more information on the tournament and/or individual brackets, visit aps.edu and look for the Metro championships link.
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