Copyright © 2021 Roswell Daily Record
Copyright © 2021 Roswell Daily Record
On Friday, the New Mexico Activities Association is scheduled to announce its All-State basketball team. Just like in football, the Roswell Daily Record is announcing its inaugural Roswell Daily Record All-Chaves County basketball team. There are six members on the team, four from Roswell and two from Goddard.
Today, the RDR will be announcing the boy’s team from District 4-5A. Throughout the upcoming weeks, we will be announcing 5A girls and the lower-class districts. The RDR sports staff relied on eyewitness accounts of games, coaches’ recommendations, wins and losses, tournament appearances and what each player meant to their team.
The RDR went with a starting five and a sub.
For the Coyotes, we start with a freshman guard: Taymon Burrola. Burrola started the season on the bench for the Coyotes and by the end of the season, he averaged 10.8 points per game. Burrola’s best game was in a loss to eventual state champion, Belen (60-53). Burrola led all scorers with a game-high 24 points.
“Taymon Burrola proved himself as one of the best freshmen to play at Roswell,” coach Moses “Dude” Burrola said, “and in the state. He stepped up for us in big games and proved that he belongs. The sky is the limit for him. With hard work, he can be a great ballplayer in the future.”
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Many coaches have noted how difficult Burrola is to guard. He can shoot the three-point shot; he can drive, and he can pass.
Joining him in the backcourt is ultra-quick guard Jasia Reese. Reese was fourth in the team in scoring, averaging 9.3 points per game. His contributions to the team cannot be measured in points alone, on the defensive end of the floor he was the catalyst for getting big stops. He would come up with a steal, rebound, blocked shot or go coast-to-coast and soar to the basket for two points. Reese led Roswell in assists per game and steals per game. He was second on the team in defensive rebounds with 2.6 per game, second in offensive rebounds with 1.4 and rebounds per game with 4.0.
“Jasia is so quick and athletic,” Coyotes coach Burrola said. “He makes our press work and causes chaos for other teams. He comes out of nowhere to make plays for us. He still has two years as a Coyote, he’s going to be an exciting player.”
At shooting guard is Tarren Burrola, who was district 5A leading scorer with 504 points and averaged 18 points per game according to Max Preps at the time of this article. Tarren Burrola led the district in three-point shooting, making 67 while shooting 36 percent from beyond the arc. He tied with his brother Taymon in free throw percentage at 87 percent.
Tarren had the quickest release from the three-point line. Often when other teams were closing in on the Coyotes, it was Tarren that would spot up and hit a three-pointer from the corner to give his team breathing room.
“Tarren (Burrola) was our best offensive player all year,” Coyote coach Burrola said. “Often, he would draw the other team’s best defender every night, and he was still able to score 18 points a game. He is one of the best shooters in the state and has a ton of confidence in his shooting. It will be interesting and exciting to see him play in his senior year next season.”
Filling out our team at the center is Logan Eaker, who was a force down low and held his own against Artesia’s Joe Willingham, and another All-Chaves County team member Dalin Stanford. Eaker led the team in block shots with 2.8 per game. Often unstoppable when he caught the ball down low, Eaker would turn and square up immediately and go either way and finish with his up-and-under move.
“Logan (Eaker) was our big man in the middle,” Coyote coach Burrola said. “Eaker blocked shots, worked hard and made it difficult for teams to score. He is a really good kid, and he had a great career at RHS winning a championship last season. He will play at the next level and will do an outstanding job for wherever he chooses to go. He’s arguably one of the best big men in the state.”
The other big man to make the team was Goddard’s Dalin Stanford. One of the biggest games for Stanford this season was when he scored 24 points against Santa Fe in the Al Armendariz Tournament.
The Rockets relied on Stanford for points and leadership. When he was out with an injury like he was against Roswell, Goddard was a different team. In the Roswell game, Stanford was hit in the eye and ended up having to sit out all four quarters, which turned a close game into a rout for Roswell. Stanford was second in the district in scoring with a 16.1 scoring average according to Max Preps at press time.
“Stanford is a hard worker,” Goddard coach Anthony Mestas said. “Stanford loves his team and school. He is in the top 10 in the state of New Mexico for overall rebounds. He was always coachable throughout his four years at Goddard. He was always respectful to his teammates and to his coaches.”
Rounding out the RDR All-Chaves County basketball team is arguably the best true point guard in 5A basketball: Jonah Chavez. Chavez was tied for second on the team in scoring with 8.5 points per game and also ninth in the district for scoring. One example summed up Chavez’s value for the team was when he led Goddard to a come-from-behind victory against district champion Artesia. With the clock winding down, Chavez hit a full-court shot behind the half-court line to give the Rockets momentum going into halftime. Goddard came from double digits down to their first district victory at home, 38-37.
“Chavez has something in him that you can’t coach,” Rockets’ coach Mestas said. “He has that determination, hustle and want to. He has that Pecos Valley mentality of hard work and a never quit attitude. The kid plays defense like a fly all over you. He doesn’t stop harassing the ball. He dives on the floor, jumps in the bleachers and puts his body on the line for the love of the game. As a coach and a spectator of basketball, that’s how I love to watch defense played. That’s how the old Arkansas Razorbacks used to play under Nolan Richardson. I am blessed to have this kid play for me.”