On Friday, January 10, the Westwood High School girls varsity basketball team played Gila Ridge in Mesa. Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community members Mysty Hayes and TC Carlos helped the Warriors to dominate on the court, with a final score of 52-37. The Warriors were also victorious in their January 21 game against Camelback High School; that score was 49-27.
Hayes, 16, a junior, started playing basketball when she was five years old. Over time she has improved, and she is now a starting forward and, when needed, a point guard for the Lady Warriors. Hayes averages about 13 points and five assists per game.
“I’d like to go as far as I can with basketball. Maybe go to the University of Southern California (USC) and major in physical therapy,” said Hayes. “It’s just a dream.”
Hayes’ main supporters have always been her family: her mother, Kimberly Enos; her uncle DA; her brother; and her father. “My jersey number, 24, is the number my uncle Daniel “DA” Enos had when he was here at Westwood. I have to keep it in the family,” said Hayes. Basketball is also a way for her to remain close to her late grandfather, Darius. “He passed away, and this is a way for me to keep close to him.”
“Mysty has come a long way from last year. She’s starting, and she’s only a junior. She always loved basketball, ever since she was little. She plays with the Renegades too, at home when she plays rez ball,” said Enos.
Senior TC Carlos, 17, has a slightly different story. She started playing basketball in the sixth grade and worked her way up to be the starting point guard for the Westwood Lady Warriors.
“TC has been playing basketball for about six or seven years now. She also plays with the Renegades, in the rez tournaments. I’m proud that she stepped up and stayed with the program. I know it’s a lot of commitment on her part, and she has done great,” said Michael Carlos, TC’s father. “Last year, she got MVP for the basketball season. I’m just really proud of her. We make all of her games—I haven’t missed a game yet.”
Carlos plans to attend community college after her senior year, but she will also keep her options open by applying to a college in New York. She plans to major in accounting, “work for a great business and travel all over the world.” Carlos’ biggest supporters are her dad and sister.
“I know she gets frustrated with the program and people on the team sometimes, but I’m glad she sticks with it. She knows she’s their leader and she knows that they look up to her. [She’s a captain] and I’m very proud of her,” said Mikah Carlos, TC’s older sister.
When asked what advice she would give her fellow students, Carlos responded, “Focus on your grades. Education does matter, and it determines how far you’re going to go in life.”
If you’d like to see Hayes and Carlos in action on the court, the Lady Warriors have a game at 7 p.m. tonight (February 6) at home against Mountain View. For more information about Westwood High School athletics, visit www.mpsaz.org/westwood/athletics/teams/basketball.