Spartans break Laton Mustangs in 50-point win
STRATHMORE – On Jan. 7 the Strathmore Spartans tallied their tenth win at home, and did so in dominant fashion by defeating the Laton Mustangs 63-13.
According to Spartans coach Israel Valdez, each member of the team contributed, whether it was shooting, offense, defense or passing. All the members worked hard and worked together. “Everyone has a role and they are like a piece of a puzzle. That’s a big idea: to be a star in your role,” Valdez said.
He went on to explain that the most important idea for a team is to play with a purpose and to play for each other. However, the coach made one thing clear, that the team should work on making correct reads every time. With all that said, his big idea, as well as the team’s offense and defense, played a huge role in the game.
In the first quarter, the Spartans’ Robert Bojorquez scored the first shot of the game, making an example of his skill. Throughout the whole first quarter, practically every player got in on the action. Aneas Ambriz, Manuel Andrade, Cael Alkire, Gabe Bower, Robert Bojorquez, Alex Rodriguez and Jayen Manivann, all got in on the scoring from all over the court leading to a 16-2 advantage heading into the second quarter.
While the Spartans increased their lead when Andrade added three more to their side of the board to go up 19-2, the Mustangs responded with at three-pointer of their own by Jobe Olson. Throughout the quarter, it seemed as if the Mustangs were exhausted and losing any little steam they had. However, coach Rick Alves explained how a member of the team caught his eye by encouraging the players to work hard.
“Gannen Westfall was great at rebounding. Throughout the game he kept encouraging the players to keep going and to work hard,” Alves said. Yet obviously, it wasn’t enough.
During the second quarter, Strathmore’s Bojorquez fired his shots left and right, letting out 3 three-pointers, a two-pointer, and two free throws. He amazed the crowd with his performance throughout the quarter and went into halftime ahead 45-7.
The second half didn’t lend much more hope for the lowly Laton Mustangs, but that didn’t mean there wasn’t value in a very tough loss.
“Although it might not seem so based on the scoreboard, the Mustangs did well. We are a new team and they haven’t played varsity basketball yet, so they are quite new. COVID also had us take a step back because we didn’t play at all last year. They met my expectations and they did well,” Alves said.
Things only got worse in the third quarter as the Spartans extended their lead 61-9. And by the fourth quarter there wasn’t much action for either team. The Mustangs mounted little offensive production scoring only four more points while the Spartans ended the game ahead 63-13. The Spartans played their next game against Woodlake on Tuesday, Jan. 11 after press time, and they will face off against the Farmersville Aztecs on the road on Thursday, Jan. 13 at 6:30 p.m.