Ledes from the Land of Enchantment

Prep notes: Martinez, Battle, Swedberg join Cibola Hall of Fame

The late Missy Martinez is one of three new inductees into the Cibola High School Athletics Hall of Fame.

Martinez, Amber Battle and Valerie Swedberg were formally inducted earlier this month.

Martinez was 30 when she died last Feb. 4 from COVID-19. During her playing days at Cibola, the diminutive (5-foot-3) left-handed pitcher was a dominant force in the circle, leading the Cougars to three consecutive state championships, from 2007-09.

There was virtually no honor she didn’t achieve while at Cibola, and she still holds a handful of state records, including career strikeouts with over 1,200 of them.

She had 11 no-hitters as a Cougar — seven of them in a single season — and 35 career shutouts.

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She later played two seasons at New Mexico Highlands.

Battle, a 2011 Cibola graduate, was one of the most talented girls basketball players the Cougars ever produced and she was also a prolific track sprinter, holding Cibola’s record in both the 100-meter and 200-meter dashes. She was a double state champion in both events in 2009 and 2010.

Twice Battle helped the Cougars reach the state championship game in basketball, and she was all-state three times during her fantastic Cibola career.

Battle later became a star at Texas Tech, and led the Red Raiders in scoring, rebounds, assists and steals twice, and she was All-Big 12 two times. She played on a professional level briefly in Europe, for a team in Finland.

Swedberg, like Martinez, was a star on the softball field.

She graduated in 2010, and played varsity softball all four years for the Cougars, and she was a teammate of Martinez on those aforementioned three state championship teams. She swung a heavy bat for Cibola, and still is tied for the single-season state record in home runs, having swatted 19 in the 2010 season.

She later played college for New Mexico State, and was a first-team all-conference selection as an Aggie, and she was a multiple all-state selection at Cibola.

GRAND STYLE: There have been multiple basketball players in Albuquerque who have reached 1,000 points for their careers during this season.

The latest person to reach that number got there faster than most anyone else.

Eldorado High sophomore guard Bella Hines reached 1,000 points last Thursday against Manzano. And Hines reached that figure with a career-high 40-point effort, and went over 1,000 on a 3-pointer.

Hines got to 1,000 points in just her 41st varsity game with the Eagles. She is averaging a shade over 28 points per game so far this season, and should be a lock to surpass 2,000 points before her prep career ends — and could conceivably get there even before the end of her junior season.

At current, there is only one girl from the metro area that ranks among the top 10 all time in career scoring, and that is the recently graduated Juliana Aragon from Bernalillo, who finished with 2,456 points before finishing last March. Aragon ranks No. 10

Other players who have gotten to 1,000 points during this season include Del Norte’s Shane Douma-Sanchez, Albuquerque High’s Leilani Love, Hope Christian’s Jett Wyckoff and Kathleen Obisike, and Albuquerque Academy’s Kellan Gehres.

Those are equally impressive in this way: the 2021 spring pandemic season was compromised and significantly shortened, robbing all of them of at least 10-15 games.

METRO SWIMMING: Eldorado’s boys won the Albuquerque Metro Championships last Saturday at the West Mesa Aquatic Center, scoring 512 points for a convincing victory over runner-up La Cueva (340). Albuquerque High (284) placed third.

The Eagles won every individual event and all three relays in a tremendous performance. They had four double champions.

Gage Sheldahl captured first place in the 200-yard freestyle, and also the 100 free. Cole Bettis swam to victory in the 50 free and the 100 breaststroke. Krishna Clarke was first in the 200 IM, and also the 100-yard butterfly event. Nolan Arnholt earned the title in the 500 free, and he was also the winner in the 100 backstroke.

Eldorado swept the relays (200 free, 400 free and 200 medley), as well. Sheldahl, Bettis, Clarke and Arnholt combined to win the 400 free relay by a whopping 15½ seconds.

THIS AND THAT: Cleveland’s Leah Futey on Monday was chosen as the Gatorade cross country Athlete of the Year in her sport; Futey had a big senior season, capped with a triumph at the Class 5A state championship meet at Albuquerque Academy. … A pair of New Mexico football players have made their college commitments, with Volcano Vista linebacker Nathan Wallin committing to New Mexico Military Institute in Roswell, and Ruidoso big man Dalton Trapp committing to Eastern New Mexico.

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