Copyright © 2021 Roswell Daily Record
Copyright © 2021 Roswell Daily Record
Roswell’s boys’ basketball coach Moses “Dude” Burrola has managed to put a player on the all-district team in each of his three years as head coach. This season he put one player on the first-team: son, Taymon Burrola; and senior Cristian De la O on the second team.
Roswell had four players that received honorable mention: Xavier Sosa, Dayton Gonzales, Freddie Anaya and Noel Chacon. Those players could have easily found themselves on first and second teams.
Nonetheless, “Dude” will begin next year with a lot to work with. This team could end up being more versatile and athletic than any team he has had in the past.
The guy that will turn the key next year will be a potential player of the year in Taymon “Iron Man” Burrola. Burrola was chosen first-team all-district this year as a junior. Burrola has seemingly been around forever, since he’s started as a freshman.
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Taymon has the opportunity to be player of the year — it will take two things for that to happen. As a member of the media, those all-state teams are comprised of players on teams making a deep run in the state tournament.
Roswell will have the talent to open up in the top five next year. The thing that will hurt them is they will have no height, unless someone moves into the district.
With the arsenal Roswell has coming back next year, this team will have to be a scrappy bunch that gets up and down the floor. They will have to take and hit the three’s and keep firing while crashing the boards for second-chance opportunities.
For Burrola to garner player of the year he will have to put up big numbers. He will have to average 20 points a game. He will have to dominate lesser competition and put up huge numbers — and against equal or better competition, he will have to make his presence felt.
Burrola was the leader on the court, most of the time the ball ran through him. He will have to find another capable scorer to take the pressure off of him, much like he had in Dominic Nava. They were the perfect one-two punch, among the top guard combinations in the state.
Burrola was the perfect leader in that he was unafraid to take the big shots. He will have to do that regardless of if he misses or makes them. He has to have confidence in himself and his shot, that it won’t matter whether the Coyotes are up by two or down by two.
There were games when Taymon carried Roswell until he could get help. Next season he will have to be prepared to do that at times. One of the things he will have to do is practice the three-point shot until it is second nature to him.
Taymon will be a nightmare for opposing guards. He will be too big and strong for an opposing guard to handle him down low. He will need to be able to hit the three and use it as a way to rest. Taymon is more than capable of using the three as an offensive weapon.
“Dude” will have all kinds of options on offense if Roswell can dictate the pace. If Taymon can hit the three and space the floor, it will open up shots for Hector Tarin or Juan Ybarra, which will help with the inside game for Anthony Ortega, Alonzo Acosta, and TJ Fletcher. It will also give Taymon and Freddie Anaya and Talon Sanders the ability to drive the ball to the basket.
“Taymon Burrola has been solid all three years,” “Dude” said. “If he works hard this summer, he could be a top candidate for player of the year.”
Cristian De la O
Cristian De la O had a good senior year. He played solidly and was an asset. In games against Carlsbad and Clovis at the Coyote Den, he gave both teams fits as he was able to break their press easily.
He was a team player and did some of whatever the team needed him to do. Against Hobbs at home, he was not afraid to challenge their shot blockers and take it to their faces and put up a shot. His scoring on the inside was very underrated.
If Cristian was having a tough game, he still kept playing and played through. He was big-time as the lead on Roswell’s press. He was on the ball all the time and was able to gamble and make steals, which often resulted in a layup or changed the momentum of the game for Roswell.
His value was never more evident when the team played Onate in the playoffs. Roswell had to play that game without him. He would have been another on-the-ball guard and helped with their press. One of the nice parts about De la O, he was good with the basketball and made good decisions in pressure moments.
“Those are great individual awards,” “Dude” said. “ Both players (Taymon Burrola and De la O) are well deserved for both of those players as well as those that were honorable mention.”
Xavier always had the game. He proved this year that he could play with the big boys. After not playing the previous season, one wonders what he could have done.
Xavier started for most of the year and was on the floor in key moments of games. Sosa hit a couple of late jumpers against Onate to keep the score close.
“Sosa didn’t play last year,” “Dude” said, “but he was a major contributor this season. His basketball IQ is above and beyond. He worked hard all season and played well. His defense was one of the best on the team. He handled the ball and did a good job making decisions on offense.”
Gonzales’ star is shining a lot after being thrust into playing time. Gonzales reflects the adage to always be ready because you never know when you might get your opportunity.
Coach Burrola stated earlier that Gonzales was in the rotation earlier in the season and had fallen out of it. He didn’t pout, according to “Dude,” he just kept being the ultimate teammate and working hard in practice and working on his game.
Gonzales finally received his chance after an unfortunate incident resulting in disciplinary action against seven of his teammates. Gonzales and his crew filled in admirably as the Coyotes went 2-1 during a three-game stretch without their key players. They beat Carlsbad twice and lost a tough game to Hobbs on the road.
“He is a passing machine,” “Dude” said. “He sees things that most people don’t. His IQ is awesome, and he will be a major player for us next year. He stepped up big time in the district. He needs to get quicker and faster and he could be one of the best point guards in the district next season.”
Freddie Anaya is just a tough, hard-nosed, scrappy, athletic basketball player. Whatever he does on the court, he is going to do it at 100 mph. Anaya played junior varsity before getting the call to the varsity.
When he had his chance to play, he was not afraid to take the big shot or drive the ball to the middle. He along with Talon Sanders brings football toughness to the team. He is not afraid of contact and doesn’t back down from anyone.
Noel Chacon might have had the best stroke on the team this year. He hit some big shots against Carlsbad. “Dude” would often bring him in the game to loosen up the inside and more often than not Chacon delivered. It is too bad that he is a senior and doesn’t have another year. Chacon was starting to get comfortable playing.
“Noel (Chacon) was a kid that could light it up,” “Dude” said. “We would spread the floor and kick it to him, so we could penetrate. We’re going to miss his shooting. He’s a great kid.”
As the season ends for the Coyotes, there is the promise of hope for the future of Roswell basketball. There will probably not be a basketball banquet because of what has happened.
“I’m proud of all of our seniors,” “Dude” said. “They are all true Coyotes and we are going to miss them next season. I like what we have coming back and look forward to seeing what we can accomplish next season.”
Sports editor J.T. Keith can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 304, or firstname.lastname@example.org.