If there is a consistent factor in the selection of high school post-season honors teams, it is that they are almost always inconsistent.
Usually that’s because opinions can vary based on who is making the selections and how well the young athletes have been “sold” to voting members by their prep coaches.
An example of how contradictory and unpredictable selections can be surfaced over the weekend when a pair of news agencies, the Arizona Republic and AZSportsnetwork, announced their all-state teams.
The AzSportsnetwork, which has been selecting all-state teams for the various conferences for the past five years, named Payson High’s Westin Gibson to the first team.
Curiously, however, the network chose him as a first baseman, a position he has not played in high school.
The all-state first team shortstop position Gibson was positioned at most during high school went to Florence’s Adam Touhey.
While the sports network thought enough of the former Longhorn star, who lettered four years at PHS, to name him first team, the Arizona Republic passed on him for either the first or second team and tapped him only “honorable mention.”
The members of the Arizona Baseball Coaches Association, those who see the players perform day in and day out, chose Gibson to their all-state second team.
The Arizona Republic chose teammate Jake Sleeper second team, but the pitcher-infielder did not make the AZsportsnetwork first or second team.
In softball, Lady Longhorns Rylee Halenar and Taylor Petersen received only honorable mention accolades by the Arizona Republic, but were chosen second team by the sports network.
The discrepancy in all-state selections seems to prove a proverb uttered by an old coach decades ago was indeed true. He said, “It’s a good thing we have different likes and opinions — if we didn’t, we’d all have married the same woman.”