Hayden avenges earlier season loss to Superior

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Superior’s Sammy Lopez (#3) goes for the layup. Photo by Phalicitee ‘Pinky’ Thomas

  The Hayden boys’ basketball team avenged a Dec. 20 loss to Superior by defeating the Panthers in Superior last Thursday, 75 – 69.

  The win was the Lobos second in their last eight games.

  Superior, which has lost five of its last six games, was without one starter due to illness and three others fouled out in the loss.

  “Hayden made their layups and their free throws,” Superior head coach Ryan Palmer said afterwards. “We did not. Hayden [also] outworked us on the boards and getting to loose balls.”

  Superior junior Andrew Martinez scored a game-high 26 points, which was also his career high. He also had three rebounds and tied for the team lead with four steals in the game. 

  “Andrew did a great job playing aggressively on offense, Palmer said. “He drove to the hoop and carried our offense in the fourth quarter.”

  Panthers’ senior Sammy Lopez finished with 16 points, four rebounds, two assists, and four steals. Junior Nathan Daurte also reached double figures scoring with 11 points to go along with three rebounds, three assists, and four steals.

  Palmer admitted it wasn’t a great game against the Lobos, but his team responded the following night, playing what he called “our best game of the season” against 2A member AZ Lutheran Academy. 

  The Coyotes defeated the Panthers, 65 – 58, but Palmer was encouraged by his team’s performance.

  “Although we lost, we played our butts off,” he said. “We were flying all over the floor, and had we made a few more layups we probably pull off the upset against a tough team. 

  “If we play the rest of the season like we did Friday night, we still have a chance for a tournament berth.”

  Hayden up next:  Jan. 24 at NFL Yet Academy, Jan. 28 at North Phoenix Prep. Tipoff for both games is scheduled for 7 p.m.

  Superior up next:  Jan. 24 at Ray, Jan. 28 vs. Duncan. Tipoff for both games is scheduled for 7 p.m.

Andy Luberda (1138 Posts)

Andrew Luberda began writing for Copper Area News Publishers (CANP) in February 2013 after working 15 years in Healthcare Financial Management. Andy covers sports for 11 high schools. His stories are published in Copper Basin News, San Manuel Miner and Superior Sun, in addition to the San Tan Valley Daily PRSS and CopperArea websites. Additionally, he has written human interest stories and business profiles. In May 2012, he earned an AAS in Sports Management at Central Arizona College before graduating with a BS in Communication from Arizona State University in 2014. He and his wife, Kelli, have three sons – AJ, Kyle, and Kade.


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