By Greg Perkins–
The Holbrook Roadrunners went 6-0 at the Round Valley tournament over the weekend, winning the championship over Silver City, N.M., on Saturday afternoon.
On Thursday, Holbrook faced Camp Verde in one of two warm up games that day. The Birds turned a seven-point halftime lead into a 66-47 win to open the tournament.
Jalen Jackson led the team in scoring with 23 points, including three treys. Bryson Keoni and Rashaun Baldwin added 10 each; Kyle Chee, 6; Sheldon Silversmith, Jimrail Manygoats and Jesse Spangler, 4 each; Seth Hadley and Brandon Bitsui, 2 each; and Frank Martin, 1.
That afternoon the Roadrunners took care of Show Low by a similar score, winning 66-44 over the Cougars. Holbrook grabbed control of the game early, outscoring Show Low 26-9 in the first period. Show Low was never able to recover from that initial blow as the Birds cruised to the win.
Silversmith led the team in scoring with 17 points. Keoni added 16; Spangler, 14; Jackson, 9; Chee, 5; Baldwin, 4; and Martin, 1.
After receiving a bye in the first round of bracket play, the Roadrunners met up with Valley Lutheran in a fill-in game and escaped with a 53-51 overtime win. This time the Birds trailed by two points after the first quarter, but flipped the tables and led by three at the half. Holbrook went cold in the fourth period, netting just four points, and when Valley Lutheran dropped in 13 points the game went to overtime. In the extra four-minute session Jackson scored five of his game high 28 points to lead Holbrook to the two-point overtime win. Keoni added 11; Spangler, 6; Baldwin, 4; Manygoats, 3; and Seth Hadley, 1.
In the second round of bracket play Holbrook faced St. Johns on Friday night and turned a close game at the half into a 15-point win with the final score at 72-57. Both teams scored well in the first half, with the Birds leading 40-35 after two periods. Holbrook netted 21 points in the third while holding St. Johns to only 10, marking the beginning of the end for the Redskins.
Keoni led the team with 16 points. Jackson added 14, Baldwin and Chee, 9 each; Spangler, 7; Silversmith and Manygoats, 6 each; Bitsui, 3; and Martin, 2.
In the semifinal round, the Roadrunners met up with a good Thatcher team and needed a fourth period comeback to win the game 62-59, earning a trip to the title game. Holbrook trailed by six at the half and by three at the start of the fourth. Jackson poured in 15 of his game high 29 points in the final eight minutes, pushing the Birds to the three-point win. Baldwin added 12, Silversmith, 7, Spangler, 6, Keoni, 4, and Chee and Manygoats, 2 each.
In the final game, Holbrook and Silver City both struggled to score. With both teams playing their sixth game in three days, the shooting touches left, but the Roadrunners managed enough points to win the low scoring game 39-35.
Holbrook’s defense held Silver City to just 13 second half points, which was enough to secure the Roadrunners eighth straight win to start the season.
Jackson again led the team with 17 points. Baldwin added 8; Spangler, 6; Keoni, 5; and Chee hit one three-point shot in the fourth period.
Jackson was named the tournament MVP. Keoni and Baldwin were also named to the all tournament team.
After hosting Mogollon on Tuesday, the Roadrunners will play a make-up game at St. Johns on Saturday, Dec. 17. On Monday, Dec. 19, they will travel to Snowflake, then they host Alchesay on Thursday, Dec. 22, in their final game before the Christmas break.