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Valdez gets jacket in Coyotes win

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Roswell High School senior Isaiah Carmona goes up for a shot against Farmington Thursday at the Coyote Den. (David Rocha Photo)

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If there were any doubts about how lethal the Coyotes press could be it was quickly ignited. Roswell had the Farmington Scorpions flustered and gasping for air.

Hall of Fame coach Flo Valdez is honored by the Poe Corn Invitational Basketball Tournament Thursday at Roswell High School. (David Rocha Photo)

It seemed like the time off served the Coyotes well as everyone was hungry to play basketball. On a night where the Coyotes honored Hall of Fame coach, Flo Valdez with a jacket after halftime Roswell coach Moses “Dude” Burrola emptied his bench as they won, 77-46 at the Coyote Den Thursday night.

“I told the kids, the teams we have played aren’t Alamogordo, Hobbs, Onate, or Las Cruces,” coach Burrola said. “We schedule like this on purpose. It is going to make us better. We’re young, and we still have a lot of growing to do.”

The Coyotes handled the press and pressure better against the Scorpions. In a matter of three minutes, the game turned when Roswell forced turnover after turnover. Roswell stretched a 12-8 first-quarter lead to a 31-18 lead at the half.

One of the most impressive players on the court was sophomore Dominic Nava. He only scored seven points, but his ball-handling ability and handling of the press helped allow mismatches on the offensive end of the floor. Nava was a ball hawk on the defensive end of the floor, getting steals, knocking passes away and then forcing his man inside the middle where Logan “Eraser” Eaker continued his campaign to be president of the swat club. Eaker had four blocks on the night.

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“I’m trying to work my handles,” Nava said. “I’m trying to move my feet better on defense. I’m trying to work on my shot and my defense and get more steals for us. If we get more steals it will help our offense. The game is a little faster at the varsity level.”

Roswell (8-5) played 12 players tonight, trying to gain experience for later when district play begins. Coach Burrola thinks that the tough schedule has helped his team and slowed things down for his sophomores.

“We’ve worked a lot on defense the last couple of days,” coach Burrola said. “Sometimes we struggle on offense, but we use our defense to help us score. Coach Chris Burrola has done a good job with our defense.”

In this game, Eaker made his presence felt, as he blocked shots and went to the hole looking to score. On the offensive end, the “Broil and Bake brothers did it again. As Tarren Burrola went for 21 points from long range, and Taymen Burrola scored 17, and Eaker added 10 points with Reese scored seven.

It is not district play yet, but Artesia and the Coyotes will hook it up tonight. Look for the Bulldogs to play tough man-to-man defense.

Roswell plays at the Den against Artesia at 6 p.m.

Goddard 65, Bloomfield 30

It was over with before it began as it was party time at the Launch Pad, Senior Dalin Stanford led Goddard in scoring with 22 points, Derek Carrica and Jonah Chavez each added 12 points as Goddard won, 65-17 Thursday night.

“Tonight, we played well,” Goddard coach Anthony Mestas said. “We rebounded the ball really well. Everybody chipped in and played well for us and helped out.”

Lovington is a good team and well-balanced, led mostly be seniors. The key to the game will be for Stanford to stay out of foul trouble and for the Rockets to have three players score in double digits.

“Stanford is a returning All-District player, and he is playing up to that level,” Mestas said. ‘He does what he has to do to help us.”

Goddard (6-6) plays district foe Lovington today at 6:30 p.m.

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