Healdsburg finishes spring season with 14-2 record
The Greyhounds put the finishing touches on an outstanding spring basketball campaign on Saturday, turning back host Archie Williams High School in a hotly contested battle in San Anselmo, 54-50.
The non-league win came on the heels of a North Bay League split in league-ending games against Cardinal Newman (36-26 loss) and Maria Carrillo (48-35 win), giving Healdsburg a final overall season mark of 14-2.
“Overall, I was really pleased with our players, they were all dedicated and did their best given the situation we were all put into this season,” HHS coach Yasha Mokaram reflected. “They accepted their roles, and they played hard in games and practices. I’ll really miss our two seniors Dylan (Hayman) and Chase (Sommer). Both are such great young men — they were like family to me these past four years and I’ll miss having them around.”
The 2021 season was a continuation of what has been a golden age of basketball under Mokaram. The first-ever spring campaign was significant on several fronts, not the least of which was a record-setting year by senior veteran Hayman. The fourth-year star didn’t just break the all-time HHS boys scoring record established in 1986 by Mark Giorgi, he shattered it, finishing up a remarkable career with 1,838 points.
The three-time defending league champion Greyhounds, who won the 2018 crown in the last year of the Sonoma County League, captured their last two titles following NBL realignment in the Redwood Division. This spring, the Hounds moved up to the tough NBL Oak Division, beating every team except Cardinal Newman to finish in second place with a 9-1 record.
Hounds take two
Healdsburg opened their final stretch of play on May 26 with a highly anticipated battle of league unbeatens against perennial power Cardinal Newman. The game was a defensive battle from the start, as the Cardinals slogged to a 7-2 lead after one. The Hounds got it rolling in the second period, riding the hot hand of Hayman to forge a 15-13 advantage at the break.
The low-scoring tilt waged on after intermission, with the game moving to the final period knotted at 22-apiece. It was not to be for Healdsburg, as the Cardinals took control in the fourth quarter to out-score the Hounds 12-4 in the period en route to a 34-26 victory. Hayman led all scorers in the game with 20 points.
“Everyone was spent at the end of the game, physically, emotionally and mentally,” Mokaram noted. “At Thursday's practice, multiple starters sat out with nagging injuries.”
The Greyhounds were back in the win column two nights later at Maria Carrillo, emerging from a sluggish first half to grab a 22-16 lead. The Greyhounds maintained the advantage in the final two periods, holding the Pumas in check after intermission on their way to a 48-35 win.
Hayman led the way with 27 points, while Gavin Vogensen chipped in nine for Healdsburg.
The Hounds ventured south to Archie Williams High School (formerly Sir Francis Drake) in San Anselmo for Saturday’s season finale, engaging the Pirates in a back-and-forth game that would come down to the final minutes. Healdsburg raced to a 19-4 cushion after one, but the Pirates used a strong second period to close within 27-20 at the half. Healdsburg clung to a tenuous, 35-34 edge after three and held Williams off in the final seconds to pull out a 54-50 victory.
Hayman finished up a sensational high school career with a game-high 34 points and 17 boards, while Vogensen added 10.
“Most of the kids on the team were totally spent, but Dylan Hayman was the exception,” Mokaram noted. “We were so lucky to have him and (to have) won, in large part due to Dylan's ability to score and get buckets every time we needed it.”