Home Sports Local Sports Goddard’s power forward soars in senior year

Goddard’s power forward soars in senior year

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Goddard’s Dalin Stanford and Roswell’s Logan Eaker battle for a rebound during Saturday’s Poe Corn Tournament. (Shawn Naranjo Photo)

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As Goddard’s senior Dalin Stanford goes, so goes the Rockets. Stanford has averaged over 20 points in his last three games. With the moves and inside game of an old soul, Stanford has the hustle and inside game of Dave Cowens of the Boston Celtics.

“He’s a returning All-District player for us,” Goddard coach Anthony Mestas said. “He’s playing up to that level this year. He’s doing what he must do to help us chip away. Everybody has to do the same.”

In a game that went into overtime, Stanford played with four fouls and scored 24 points to lead his team to a victory over Portales. Stanford has improved his footwork this season and has developed multiple moves in the post. One of his most effective moves is his up and under move.

If the middle is clogged Stanford has developed a drop step in which he spins away from the defender, placing him on his hip allowing him to draw fouls and three-point plays as he did Tuesday night to tie the score against the Rams at 62-62 and force the game into overtime.

“I hired a trainer at New Mexico Military Institute to help me with my game,” Stanford said. “Coach Austin has helped me before and after practice as well. I got the hustle from my dad, Ben.”

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Stanford has followed his dad’s advice that the hardest players to guard, especially in high school, are the players who can score on the inside and on the outside as well.

Stanford inside game and hustle allow him to play with the tenacity to match up with inside players who are bigger than him. In a game against Roswell on Saturday, he matched up with Logan “Eraser” Eaker outscoring him 24 -15 points. Both big men blocked each other’s shot as each held their own against the other. Eaker is 6-foot-7 to Stanford’s 6-foot-3.

“It’s been a main goal of mine,” Stanford said, “to average 20 points a game and grab 10 rebounds.” For us to win, I need to average as close to that as possible. The only other big guy we have is Derek Carrica.”

With Stanford and Carrica in the lineup at the same time, coach Mestas runs a high-low offense. Normally, the Rockets will try to exploit the other team’s smaller lineup. On Friday night at the Poe Corn Tournament, both players wore Lovington out on the offensive end of the court as Stanford had 28 points.

“My team goals this year is to make it to the Pit,” Stanford said. “My most favorite memory so far has been starting as a freshman for eight games. The other would be when we played Santa Fe this year in the Capital Tournament, I hit a shot at the buzzer to win the game for us.”

Stanford’s goals are to play at the next level and attend college. He is somewhat of a tweener at 6-foot-3, but he has drawn interest from several schools. NMMI and Eastern New Mexico University have shown interest in his game, most of the college coaches like the way he plays all-out on both ends of the floor.

The highest the Rockets have gone in his four-years at Goddard is to the first round. For Stanford to advance to the state, he feels like Jonah Chavez has to steal the ball, Tommy Madrid has to hit the open shot and Carrica has to continue to be a force for them as well.

“He plays with so much heart,” Mestas said. “He’s enthusiastic, and out there with coach Austin, who’s our post coach. They are out there working on his post moves and working on their bunny shots and taking the ball to the rack. We need Dalin (Stanford) to have big games for us. Credit him that he puts a lot of time in order to get better. He (Stanford) has a lot of dedication and heart. Everything that he is getting he deserves.”