The Hayden High School boys basketball team had a season to remember, running undefeated through the Western Slope League. And that season was appropriately honored last month as the Tigers earned the most all-league honors of any team in the area.
All five of Hayden’s starters earned mention of some sort, and three were on the all-league first team. Jorge Valdez, Mark Doolin and Paul Laliberte all earned that honor. Valdez led the team with 15.3 points and 10 rebounds per game. Doolin scored 14.2 points and had 7.8 rebounds per game while Laliberte scored 15.2 points and dished 4.2 assists per game.
Aaron Cramer and Isaac Bridges earned honorable mention honors.
“We’re pleased with that,” Hayden coach Mike Luppes said. “Those kids deserve that. They did a great job all year. We had different kids step up at different times. That was one of the keys to our success.”
Doolin also received several other top honors. He was selected to receive the Yampa Valley Officials Association’s sportsmanship award, one of only two players, male or female, in the region to be so honored.
He also was selected as the senior player of the year in the Western Slope.
The Hayden boys might have been particularly honored, but there was no shortage of other all-league players on local teams.
The Steamboat boys team had three players make the list. Carter Kounovsky was a first-team selection. Ben Custer and Garrett Bye, meanwhile, were honorable mention selections.
Ryan Jeep was a first-team league selection for Soroco while Nic Paxton was on the honorable mention squad.
Jessica Rossi was first-team for the Soroco girls while Josie Rossi, Jacey Schlegel and Briana Peterson were honorable mention picks.
McKenzie Repollo was a first-team guard for the Steamboat girls and NIkki Fry an honorable mention selection. For the Hayden girls, Olivia Zehner was first-team and Savannah Williams had honorable mention.