Cody York’s school record eight three-pointers was the shot in the arm the Longhorns needed to take a first-round state tournament 75-46 victory over the Sedona Red Rock Scorpions.
York broke the mark of seven set by Hunter Walden in 1998 and tied by Tyler Pettet in 2001.
The senior sharp shooter finished his red-hot evening with stats that could be a month’s worth of play for some high school players.
He tallied 33 points, hauled in eight rebounds, blocked three shots, dished out two assists and had two steals.
“It was a good night for him,” coach Kenny Hayes said. “His career best is 34 points he scored against Alchesay.”
Most impressively, York shot 61 percent from the field, hitting eight of 11 from three-point territory.
The PHS victory, which was chalked up Feb. 21 in Wilson Dome, propelled the state sixth-seeded Horns into a second-round game against No. 3 Chinle.
The clash tips off at 7 p.m. Feb. 27 in the Wildcat Den in Chinle.
“I’m excited. We are looking forward to that game and playing in that type of atmosphere,” Hayes said.
Chinle typically draws about 4,000 reservation area fans to Wildcat Den, which has been called the finest high school arena in America.
Coasting to a win
In Payson’s win over Sedona, which entered the tournament as the 11th seed, the Horns jumped out to a 13-8 lead and expanded it to 30-18 at halftime.
By outscoring Sedona 21-11 in the third quarter, the Horns built a commanding cushion that allowed Hayes to begin emptying his bench, inserting some players recently brought up from the junior varsity.
In addition to York’s offensive contributions, the Horns’ cause received 12 points from Dakota Marshall and nine from Cody Waterman. Tyler Savage tallied eight points.
Senior point guard Shane Keith engineered the Longhorn offense, dishing out seven assists.
As a team, the Horns out-rebounded the smaller Sedona squad 39-18.
The Horns were, however, sometimes careless with the ball, committing 16 turnovers, a mark that Hayes will want to correct during this practice week.
With the win, Payson improves its record to 19-10 and 9-1 in Wilson Dome.
Around the state
In other state first-round games on Feb. 21, top-ranked Estrella Foothills ran roughshod over No. 16 Round Valley, 83-41.
In Fountain Hills, the homestanding Falcons slipped past Holbrook 59-57. FH entered the tournament as a No. 8 seed, and Holbrook was No. 9.
Chino Valley (No. 5) played host to No. 12 Monument Valley and waltzed away to a 72-58 victory.
No. 10 Maricopa traveled to No. 7 Winslow only to lose a 78-71 decision.
No. 2 ranked Window Rock rode its home court advantage to an 84-66 victory over No. 15 Snowflake.
All second-round games will be played Feb. 27 on the home court of the highest seed.
On March 6, the final four moves to Jobing.com Arena in Glendale.