County basketball athletes bring home All-Metro honors

........................................................................................................................................................................................

Los Lunas girls basketball star, Teige Zeller, spent plenty of time on the stage Monday night at the Marty Saiz State Farm Agency Albuquerque Coaches Association All-Metro High School Basketball Banquet.

Zeller took home a stack of awards, including 4A/3A Defensive Player of the Year, a spot on the 4A/3A All-Metro First Team, recognition as a member of the state champion Lady Tigers and the coveted 3A/4A All-Metro Player of the Year award.

"It means a lot," Zeller said as she accepted her award. "I just want to thank my awesome team, I love you girls."

Zeller also made sure to thank her head coach and father, Marty Zeller.

"I love him to death, he's the most incredible coach and father ever," she said. "Getting to experience high school basketball and getting to win a championship with him, made it that much more special."

Coach Zeller was named the 4A/3A Coach of the Year at the banquet as well. He led the Lady Tigers in an impressive season, ending in a state championship.

Each of the Lady Tigers in attendance received a framed team photo commemorating their winning season.

On the boys' side, Los Lunas' Ben Romero was given the honor of receiving the All-Metro Player of the Year award.

"It's a good feeling," he said as he accepted his trophy. "It took a lot of hard work and dedication."

When asked to sum up his team in a single sentence, he answered, "Even better, I can put it into one word — brotherhood."

Other county athletes were recognized for their hard work this season as well.

Katie Inman, Chris Sanchez, and Jacob Holland, all of Los Lunas, were given All-Metro Honorable Mentions.

Los Lunas' Tinaya Murphy was chosen to the All-Metro Second Team, along with Brenda Baeza of Valencia and Zach Martin of Belen.

All-Metro First Team honors where given to Mariah Forde of Belen, and Ben Romero and Teige Zeller of Los Lunas

Jordan Rodriguez and Nick Kurtz of Belen, Torri Torres and Josue Padilla of Valencia, and Nicole Hathoot and Quentin Mullins of Los Lunas were given the distinction of being named Senior Student Athletes. These students are among the top in their class and their school in grade point average, and have shown excellence on and off the court throughout their high school careers.

Along with the award presentations, the night included a speech from University of New Mexico Lobo post and New Mexico high school graduate Alex Kirk, encouragement from Albuquerque actor and motivational speaker Eric Martinez, and a room full of dedicated and talented high school athletes.