East region coaches and players could not be blamed for being a bit miffed when the Arizona Baseball Coaches Association announced its 3A All-State selections.
The peeved stance would be because only five East players were among the 24 athletes named to the team in a voting of AzBCA members.
State champion Blue Ridge, a team that rolled through the season compiling a 31-2 record and a 17-game winning streak, had just two players, Sebastian Kessay and Nick Williams, named all-state. Both were chosen first team.
Show Low’s Trevor MacArthur and Troy Carpenter joined Payson’s Westin Gibson on the second team.
Also, no East or 3A player was chosen to the All-Arizona team.
River Valley, a team Blue Ridge whipped 10-5 in the state semifinals, had the most players chosen all-state, three. The trio was named second team.
Gibson’s naming marked the third consecutive year he was chosen all-state. In 2010 at the conclusion of his junior season, he was named the designated hitter on the AzBCA all-state second team.
Following his sophomore season he was chosen second team all-state by the coaches association and the staff of The Arizona Republic.
In addition to Gibson being tapped all-state, he was earlier tapped All-East first team and on May 28 played in the North vs. South All-Star game.
At the conclusion of the regular season, after the Horns were eliminated from the state tournament by a loss to Florence, coach Scott Novack praised Gibson as “a four-year varsity starter with a desire to win as much as anybody I’ve ever coached.
“He came up big for us many times.
“I tell scouts all the time, he’s a five-tool player; he’s the only one who ever beats him.”
While Gibson played mostly shortstop this past season, taking time away from the position only when he was called upon to pitch, there are those who think his baseball future is in centerfield.
“With his arm and the way he can run, he could play there,” said Novack.
Gibson, who graduated with the PHS class of 2011, also starred in football at PHS lettering three years as a quarterback, receiver and defensive back.
Gibson will play later this summer in the Arizona Football Coaches Association All-Star game.