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Sat, Jan. 16

Viking boys down Salome by 29 points

The Williams High School boys basketball team proved to be too much for Salome Thursday night in a 68-39 victory.

The Vikings and Frogs, playing a game that had been postponed two days before because of poor traveling conditions, played fairly even in the first half, but Williams blew away the competition in the final two quarters.

After leading by just five at the break, Williams outscored the Frogs by 24 in the second half.

“I thought all the kids played well as a team,” coach Dave Green said. “We were well-disciplined on shot selection, it was one of our better shooting days.

Tell Eckel and Curtis Bardsley, who have emerged as two of the top scorers on the team, scored 18 and 10 points, respectively. Eckel had a three-point goal among his points and Bardsley was 8-for-8 from the free-throw line.

Mario Orozco, playing in his final week of eligibility, scored 15 points for Williams. Several players got into the game and contributed for the Vikings.

The following night, Williams was at home again but facing a much tougher opponent in Orme. The Warriors came in as one of the conference’s top teams and showed few weaknesses against the Vikings.

Williams got off to a slow start with just two points in the first five minutes, that coming on a Bardsley basket.

Trailing 10-2, Steffen Eikenberry had a blocked shot at one end, the ball got down to Eckel on the other end and the senior scored on a strong drive to the hoop. Orozco also scored a basket but Orme had built a 17-6 lead in the opening quarter.

The Warriors continued to dominated in the second quarter and held a 33-8 lead at one point. At the intermission, Williams trailed by 23.

“It was a fairly bad shooting day and poor ball-handling,” Green said. “But their defense had something to do with that. I thought we battled on the rebounds, but we didn’t get that many.”

In the fourth, Williams scored more points than it did combined for the first three quarters. The game ended on a buzzer beater by Orozco.

Eckel was the lone Williams player to hit double figures with 12 points. Juaquin Ortiz added eight.

Williams’ record goes to 2-5 in the region, 6-16 overall. The Vikings were scheduled to play Mogollon Tuesday in a game after deadline.

Games coming up include Saturday at Mayer and next Tuesday at home vs. Sedona Red Rock.

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