With one brother playing quarterback for the Tucumcari Rattlers and another at receiver, Lucas Benavidez said he and his family have always been more interested in football than other sports.
A few months from now, Benavidez hopes that will change a little. Benavidez, an eighth-grader at Tucumcari Middle School, was one of two New Mexico players nominated to play in the TourneySport USA United States Basketball Championship in Honolulu.
The tournament, sponsored by Adidas, runs June 30 through July 8 for eighth- and ninth-grade boys, with a girls tournament July 11-19.
Benavidez, a 5-foot-7, 147-pound guard, said he hopes the tournament helps him when he moves on to high school.
“I think it will make me better in basketball,” Benavidez said. “I’ve got to work on my shot a lot.”
Benavidez’ brother Josh played quarterback for the Rattlers last season, while Justin Benavidez was a wide receiver.
He’ll also have to work for the funds. The tournament itself has a registration fee of $975, and the family figures total expenses will be in the range of $6,000. Lucas and his father, Anthony Benavidez, said they are willing to do odd jobs around the community and perform various fund-raisers to get to that amount.
“I was overwhelmed,” said his father, Anthony Benavidez. “We’ve been trying to figure out a way of doing this.”
Anthony Benavidez said anybody who could help in any way was welcome to contact them at 815-9240 or by calling 461-0191 and asking for Christina Benavidez.