Azevedo provides valuable minutes for Carson
For the better part of the season, senior point guard Cody Azevedo would get a few minutes here and a few minutes there.
On Feb. 5 that all changed.
Azevedo got his first start of the season, and passed the test with flying colors. He didn’t score, but handled the ball and ran the offense in a 43-41 win at Galena. Three nights later, he scored a season-high seven points to help the Senators to a 50-42 win over Bishop Manogue.
In that one week span, Azevedo had gained confidence in himself and earned the confidence of the coaching staff. And, he’s given CHS a true go-to guy if starter Jared Rooker gets in foul trouble or is having an off night.
It has translated into more minutes in the latter part of the league season. He figures to see signifcant playing time Thursday when Carson meets Coronado at 8 p.m. in the state semifinals at Lawlor Events Center.
“Getting those valuable minutes against Galena and Bishop Manogue (his only starts of the season) was huge,” Carson coach Carlos Mendeguia. “We threw him into the fox’s den at Galena. Those two games I’m sure helped his confidence.
“I know he is going to go out give me the best he can, and he knows and understands what’s expected of him. He plays within himself.”
Playing point guard for Mendeguia is pretty simple — make good decisions and get the ball to the right people in the right spots.
“I just tried to limit my turnovers,” Azevedo said. “I just try to get it to the open person.
“I give it to somebody else who has a better angle to make a play. It’s not my job to do the scoring. That’s for Asa (Carter), Jayden (DeJoseph) and Tez (Allen).”
The trio has carried the load offensively all year, averaging in double figures throughout the season. DeJoseph has caught fire from long range in recent games. His two 3-pointers against Reno sparked the Senators in the second half in the regional finals on Saturday.
“Our point guard isn’t expected to be the leading scorer or leading rebounder,” the CHS coach said. “He has to be the quarterback out there and make sure everybody is in the right spot. He needs to see things out there.”
And, avoiding mental mistakes is key for any CHS player, especially point guards.
“I don’t have any patience for mental mistakes,” Mendeguia said. “I don’t hesitate to pull people when they (mental mistakes) happen. Physical mistakes are going to happen. They are part of the game.”
That isn’t to say Azevedo can’t score.
The senior guard has taken it to the basket hard a few times and got fouled. He went 3-for-4 from the line in the fourth quarter against Bishop Manogue.
And, he knocked down a nice jump shot from the top of the key over the weekend.
Azevedo, like his teammates, is excited about Thursday’s game, and his goal, as always, is to give the Senators quality minutes when he’s on the floor.