Last Season: The La Cueva Bears were one of the top teams in the 2021-22 season last year. They finished the season as the 5A-District 2 Champions and finished with a 24-4 record. The Bears secured the #3 seed in…
Last Season: The La Cueva Bears were one of the top teams in the 2021-22 season last year. They finished the season as the 5A-District 2 Champions and finished with a 24-4 record. The Bears secured the #3 seed in the 5A State Tournament. They advanced to the 5A State Semifinals after defeating #14 West Mesa in the First Round and #6 Los Lunas in the Quarterfinals. The season ended at “The Pit” vs the eventual State Champion, Volcano Vista Hawks.
District 2: Eldorado, Farmington, La Cueva, Piedra Vista, Sandia and West Mesa.
Key Losses: Exodus Ayers, Gabe Trujillo, Deven Dyer and Head Coach Brian Joyce.
Key Additions:(Transferred last season but didn’t play) and Brandon Battler.
Returning Varsity Players:, , , , , and Brandon Battler.
Analysis: The story of the off-season for the La Cueva Bears was losing Star player Exodus Ayers and Head Coach Brian Joyce. This team made it to the 5A State Semifinals last year and despite losing some pieces, it’s still too early to write off the Bears. It will be difficult replacing Exodus Ayers, who was a 16 points per game scorer last season and Gabriel Trujillo who averaged over 12 per game. Most of the team’s core is still intact and they’ll rely on those players to increase their production this season. Their expectations are to prove everyone wrong and finish what they started last year. They will be led by big manwho has received plenty of interest this off-season. He is a really good shot blocker and rebounder listed at seven-feet tall. When he’s in the post and catches the basketball in the right spot, he will score 99% of the time. is one of the top players in the state and my pick to lead the Bears in scoring this year. When he has the ball, it’s tough to stay in front of him when he’s driving the basketball. His slashing ability has opened up his jumper where he has improved at over the past year. is the teams point guard and floor general on the floor. He plays like an old-school point guard that is capable of taking over games and hitting big shots late in games. He is due for a huge year. is arguably the best “catch and shoot” player in the state and is in the conversation as the best shooter in New Mexico. He is more than just a shooter; he has turned into a reliable defender. Sophomore has grown to 6’3 and will have a bigger role for the Bears this season. He has improved as a perimeter shooter and when he gets downhill, it’s hard to stop him when he attacks. Cameron has a nice handle and will be a good wing player for the Bears. Sophomore will be more of La Cueva’s traditional center and is very athletic. He is an aggressive player who is not scared to guard anyone and can create second chance opportunities with his rebounding. Brandon Battler will be a heavy hitter for the Bears and will be a potential starter on the floor. It may take the new look La Cueva Bears some time to figure things out with new Head Coach Eric Orell, but the talent is there. I am excited to see each of these players have bigger roles this season and show the state what they can do this year. In my opinion the Bears are still a contender for the 5A State Championship.
Roster:, , , , , , Brandon Battler and .
Head Coach: Eric Orell.