Hard-nosed efforts from junior Tyler Savage have drawn the attention of Longhorn boys basketball coach, Kenny Hayes.
"He's always contributing at both ends of the court," the coach said. "I really like the way he plays."
Hayes was praising his 6-foot, 4-inch low post stalwart Jan. 18, following the Horns 75-53 victory over the home-standing Snowflake Lobos.
In the PHS victory, Savage's individual line score revealed his hard hat, lunch pail approach to the game -- 15 points, 15 rebounds, three steals and two assists.
"That's the way he plays most every time out," Hayes said. "He is especially a good rebounder, he's a rebounding machine."
Even in Savage's all-around performance against the Lobos, the Longhorns found themselves trailing early 18-12.
The chief thorn in the Horns' side was Lobo Peyton Flake, who finished with 10 points in the stanza.
"We weren't playing any defense on him," Hayes said.
After a timeout, the Horns upped their man-to-man defensive pressure on the way to building a 40-28 halftime lead.
With the comfortable cushion, Hayes substituted liberally in the second half.
Cody York tied Savage for game-scoring honors with 15 points. Oliver Lewinson finished with 12, Robert Walker had 10 and Matt Wilson, nine.
Point guard Shane Keith, a 6-foot junior who recently tied the school assist record of 13, dished out eight assists and drew praise from Hayes for an all-around steady floor game.
With the win, the state third-ranked Horns improved their East region leading record to 5-0 and 15-5 overall.
The Horns attempt to remain unbeaten in the East today, Tuesday, against the Show Low Cougars. Game time is 7:30 p.m. in Show Low High School gymnasium.