Longhorns Open Season With Heart-Stopping Victory In Ot


The heart-stopping high jinks from Payson High’s Longhorns continue.

The Horns’ basketball season-opener against Fountain Hills Dec. 2 saw the boys pull off a 70-63 overtime win. They scored 14 points in the four-minute tiebreaker, while the opponent mustered only half that amount.

The first quarter ended with the boys behind 19-8. At the half, the Horns had added 18 points, while Fountain Hills put another 16 on the board. Going into the fourth quarter, the Longhorns had scored another 18 points, while Fountain Hills managed only 8 additional points. The final quarter ended in a 56-56 tie after Payson added 12 more points and Fountain Hills accumulated 13.

Coach Kenny Hayes said he was impressed by the team’s comeback, but he wants to work on conditioning and ball handling.

“We had only one day of practice with the whole team (because of the football playoffs),” Hayes said.

Commenting on Max Preps, Hayes said, “The Longhorns are once again going to be a competitive team in the 3A this year. With the loss of four seniors, the Longhorns have lost some size and talent. But with seven seniors on this year’s team the Longhorns look to go deep in the state playoffs for the third straight year.”

Leading scorer in the game against Fountain Hills was Cody York with 21, followed by Cody Waterman with 14 and Ryan Hintze with 11.

The varsity Horns also include Jeff Day, Ever Figueroa, Shane Keith, Dakota Marshall, Tyler Savage and Matt Wilson.

The Longhorns are on the road Friday, Dec. 5 at Valley Christian and have their home opener Tuesday, Dec. 9 against Florence. The freshman and junior varsity teams also play. Game times are 4 p.m., 5:30 p.m. and 7 p.m.

Hayes said Valley Christian is scrappy and they can shoot. Florence is an unknown at this point, but it has a new coach so Hayes is hoping to get a good game out of them.


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