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No team is unbeatable. Until Jan. 16, that truism had been in doubt among boys basketball teams in the Verde Valley Conference, as Big Park Community School’s “A” team under head coach Amy Parrella had put double-digit distance between itself and all of its opponents.

Zach Stewart, No. 30, and Evan Favorite, No. 22, steal the ball from Big Park Community School guard Tony Van Dezor during West Sedona School’s home upset of the Coyotes on Thursday, Jan. 16. The Wildcats’ 39-36 win gave Big Park its first conference loss this season in its final game.

Then head coach Pedro Ortega Sr. and his West Sedona Wildcats [7-7] turned that outlook on its head with a 39-36 home upset, opening up all possibilities for the conference tournament at Beaver Creek School, Friday, Jan. 31, through Saturday, Feb. 1.

“We finished strong,” Ortega said. “I am very happy with the performance of the kids. They all have improved in every aspect of the game.”

The loss dropped Big Park’s conference record to 13-1 and sent a message Parrella hopes her players have received.

“I think we have a huge target on our back,” Parrella said. “We were coming off some major sicknesses, and West Sedona played a great game, but ooh! We played ug-ly. Our shots were just not dropping.


“After our loss, I’m worried about every single team, and I hope my boys are, too.”

For the full story, please see the Wednesday, Jan. 29, issue of the Sedona Red Rock News.


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