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NM Elite repeats as champion of girls NABI national tournament

PHOENIX — Piedra Vista High School’s Lanae Billy scored seven points in overtime and helped New Mexico Elite defeat Native Soldiers, 63-55, in Saturday’s final of the girls NABI national championship.

New Mexico Elite defended the Native American Basketball Invitational title it won in 2019 after last year’s tournament was canceled due to COVID-19. Billy, who was named tournament MVP, helped New Mexico avenge an earlier 64-62 loss to the Oklahoma-based Native Soldiers in the double-elimination event.

Members of the boys and girls championship teams received tickets to Saturday’s NBA Finals game in Phoenix. Volcano Vista teammates Jaelyn Bates and Natalia Chavez are members of New Mexico Elite, which is coached by Barry Bates, Jaelyn’s father.

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