Boys Basketball: Nick Salas, Tucker Stainbrook and Javi Avalos take the court with the Valley’s best in all-star game


By Patrick Dillon @PDillon_SGN

FOOTHILLS AREA – The North-South Senior All-Star Game has featured some top names over the years. Names include Stanford’s Grant Verheven, Fresno State’s Mayli McClard, and Gonzaga’s Bayli McClard. The 5th annual game will feature three players from the foothills area. On the South roster will be Strathmore’s Nick Salas. The North roster will have Golden West’s Tucker Stainbrook and Lindsay’s Javi Avalos.

The game will take place at Mission Oak High School on Saturday, April 14. Tipoff is scheduled for 7 p.m. General admission for adults is $7. Adults aged 65 and older get in free. Kids are $5 at the door.

NICK SALAS, center
The South team will have the services of one of the tallest players in Strathmore history, Nick Salas. The 6-foot-6 was a natural under the basket for Strathmore last season. In the 19 games played, he led the Spartans in three different categories.

In scoring, he had 188 points. His highest scoring game came in a 75-57 loss to the Corcoran Panthers on Jan. 18. He scored 18 points.

Many of those points came from second chances as he led in total rebounds with 155. A third of those rebounds were on the offensive side. The rest, 104 snags, were on the defensive side of the court which allowed the Spartans to remain in games. Salas blocked 59 shots.

TUCKER STAINBROOK, shooting forward
If the North team wants to run the full court press on Saturday night, they have the middle man in Tucker Stainbrook. At first glance, the 6-foot-3 forward looks to be better suited near the basket, but his quickness and massive wing span broke up one pass after another during West Yosemite League play last season.

Stainbrook is not just a driver to the hole. While comfortable under the basket he has the range to score from anywhere on the court, even from beyond the arc.

JAVI AVALOS, point guard
Lindsay’s Javi Avalos will also be on the court for the North team. Coming from the East Sequoia League, the all-star talent might be something Avalos has never seen. But Avalos is not shying away from the chance to play with players from the Fresno and Bakersfield areas.

“I am excited for this game,” Avalos said. “This is a great chance to show what I have.”

A stealthy player, Avalos can move along the perimeter one second and then cut to the hole the next, an ability that he admits will help his team, no matter the height of the opposing center. Regardless, Avalos does not have to drive all the way to the basket. His jump shot has been lethal to opposing teams in the past. The creativity of the Lindsay’s offense, and the ability to kick the ball back out, should help him as well.

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