The Texas Association of Basketball Coaches (TABC) released its All-Region lists from the 2019-2020 season and the Rio Grande Valley is well represented.
Fifteen different players ranging from Class 2A to 6A earned All-Region recognition for their play on the hardwood this past season.
You could make a starting unit with the RGV players who earned 6A All-Region honors as five players made the list.
Edinburg Vela’s Bobby Espericueta was the only player from District 31-6A to receive recognition as the senior guard led the SaberCats into the third round of the playoffs by averaging 16.6 points, 5.2 rebounds and 2.8 assists.
The Valley’s leading scorer, PSJA North’s Elijah De La Garza, was named 6A All-Region after a junior year in which he scored 22.6 points per game, 4.4 assists, 3.9 assists and 2.8 steals. De La Garza led the Raiders to a 29-8 record.
McAllen Rowe’s Louie Yebra also earned All-Region honors as he did a little bit of everything for the Warriors. The junior forward averaged 18.3 points per game, 8.5 rebounds. 3.9 blocks, 3.7 assists and 3.5 steals, leading the Warriors to their first playoff win since 2015-16.
Los Fresnos landed two players on the 6A All-Region list with seniors Ricky Altamirano and Elian Gonzalez, who helped the Falcons make program history by reaching the 6A regional tournament. Altamirano averaged 15.6 points per game, 7.9 rebounds and 2.8 steals as a versatile post that could stretch out behind the 3-point line. Gonzalez, a combo-guard, averaged 12.4 points, 6.5 rebounds, 4 assists and 3.8 steals for the Falcons, who finished with a 30-4 record overall.
Sharyland Pioneer’s inside-outside combination of Lavar Lindo and Derek Luna both were named 5A All-Region after leading the Diamondbacks to a 29-7 record and a 14-0 mark in District 31-5A. Lindo, a center, averaged a double-double with 11.7 points, 11.3 rebounds and 1.2 blocks per game, while Luna, a guard, averaged 17.9 points, 4.2 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 2.2 steals per. Together, Luna, Lindo and the Diamondbacks reached the 5A Region IV Tournament.
Brownsville Veterans forward Damian Maldonado also earned an All-Region spot as he led the Chargers to the 32-5A district title while averaging 16.4 points, 7.3 rebounds and two assists per game. His finest moment came during the Chargers’ bi-district playoff game against La Joya Palmview as Maldonado drained the game-winner as time expired to send Brownsville Veterans into the second round of the playoffs.
Hidalgo guard Gus Sanchez capped off his high school career season by averaging 19.2 points, 8.6 assists and 9.1 steals per game, earning himself a spot on the 4A All-Region squad. Sanchez led the Pirates to the regional tournament at Texas A&M-Kingsville.
Port Isabel’s Daniel Rinza and Rio Hondo’s Jabez Villarreal were also named All-Region players for the Tarpons and Bobcats. Villarreal averaged 18.1 points, 8.5 rebounds, 2.4 assists and 1.3 blocks.
The RGV’s lone player to make the 3A All-Region list is Santa Rosa’s David Bazaldua. Bazaldua led the Warriors to the regional quarterfinals with playoff victories over Falfurrias and Mathis.
Santa Maria’s Bernardino Castellanos and Giovanni Diaz were named 2A All-Region, as was San Perlita’s big man Tige Johnson. The Cougars advanced to the 2A Region-IV tournament in San Marcos, while the Trojans reached the area round of the postseason.