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Ash Fork beats Vikings in final regular season game

Viking Luis Cabrera takes a shot in the game with Ash Fork. (Cindi Chatters/WGCN)

Viking Luis Cabrera takes a shot in the game with Ash Fork. (Cindi Chatters/WGCN)

ASH FORK, Ariz. — In a nail-biting showdown, the Williams and Ash Fork boys high school basketball teams clashed in a fiercely contested final season match Jan. 27, with the Spartans coming out on top with a 53-52 win.

The game’s momentum swung back and forth, with Williams initially seizing control in the early minutes of play. With 3:54 remaining in the first quarter, the Vikings surged to a 14-3 lead over the Spartans, igniting hopes of a dominant performance. However, Ash Fork refused to back down, mounting a spirited comeback led by the sharpshooting of Josue Tellez and the determined efforts of Parnell Tsosie.

As the clock ticked down to halftime, the Spartans had narrowed the deficit to a mere two points.

Ash Fork held Williams scoreless in the second quarter, effectively neutralizing their opponent’s offensive firepower and setting the stage for a dramatic second half.


Viking Nikolai Cody brings the ball down court. (Marilyn R. Sheldon/WGCN)

The third quarter saw both teams trading baskets in a fast-paced offensive display, with Tellez and Tsosie leading the charge for Ash Fork, while Nickoli Cody and Cade Trimble answered back for Williams.

In the fourth quarter, it was Gabe Zeller who emerged as the leader or Ash Fork, delivering a near flawless performance from the free-throw line, going 7 for 8, and adding a bucket.

Despite a valiant effort from Cody, who lit up the scoreboard with his sharpshooting from beyond the arc, hitting a pair of 3-pointers, a field goal and two from the line, the Vikings ultimately fell just short of the win.


Spartan Gabril Zeller shoots over Vikings JP Echeverria. (Marilyn R. Sheldon/WGCN)

Tellez had 17 in the winning effort, with three 3-pointers, and the rest from the free throw line. Tsosie also hit three 3-pointers, and a pair of baskets for 13 points. Gabe Zeller went 11-for-12 from the free throw stripe.

Cody led the WHS scoring with 25 points, including six 3-pointers. Trimble had 12 points for the Vikings.

Both teams advance to the 1A North Canyon Boys Super Regional tournament Jan. 31. Williams will host the winner of the Rock Point - Grand Canyon matchup Jan. 31. Ash Fork will travel to St. Michael, to face the No. 2 Cardinals Jan. 31 at 6 p.m.

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