Area boys basketball games to watch this year

The Daily Times staff
Farmington's Kobe Shorty jumps up for two points against Shiprock on Thursday, Jan. 4, 2018 at Scorpion Arena. FHS will open the new season at home Nov. 30 against Valencia.

Kirtland Central at Los Lunas, 6 p.m. Nov. 29

Jacoby Love, Jordan Heslop and Brock Dowdy were the only notable contributors for a weak Broncos bench last year. And now the trio is in a situation where they'll have to lead the charge for Kirtland this year.

They'll face their first major test in that larger role against the Tigers in the season opener. Los Lunas returns multiple starters, including First-Team All-State guard Zanen Zeller.

Right off the bat, this game will forecast how successful Love, Heslop and Dowdy can be against strong competition.

Farmington vs. Valencia, 7 p.m. Nov. 30

First-year coach Jay Collins will make his debut in front of the home crowd at Scorpion Arena.

The opener will be quite telling as to how quickly players can acclimate to playing fast, baseline-to-baseline basketball under Collins.

The best-case scenario is that this first game could be the birth of an exciting new era in Scorpions basketball.

Navajo Prep vs. Sandia Prep, 6:30 p.m. Jan. 11

The Sundevils are historically a solid group, and the Eagles need a victory over a team like that this season.

It'll look better on Prep's playoff resume compared to just beating up weaker foes like Dulce, Ramah and Crownpoint. 

If the Eagles pick up a win against Sandia Prep, the odds of potentially hosting a first-round playoff game will go up.