By Vern Hee
The Trojans boys basketball team finished its year at home against the number three team in the Sunset League, the Faith Lutheran Crusaders.
The Crusaders came in with a stronger and more athletic group of young men averaging 53 points per game to Pahrump’s 40. Faith Lutheran ruled the court, blasting the Trojans 66-38.
Overall the Trojans won more non-league games than last year, finishing at 5-21.
In league, the Trojans finished the same as last year, tied with Western at 1-9 in the bottom of the league.
In the game with Faith, the Trojans had a hard time keeping up. By the end of the first quarter, the crusaders had a 13-point lead. At the half, they increased the lead to 19 points and led 39 to 20 on the shooting of Sam Stevens and D’Khari Hicks, who both came away with 13 points on the game.
The Trojans relied on the shooting of seniors Adam Brand and Dalton Beighley who each had ten points apiece.
In the end, it was the last game for Pahrump and it did not mean anything. The game was played for the six seniors and pride.
In the last two minutes of the game, Brian Hayes, head Trojans coach, stuck Billy Palmore into the game. Palmore has a cracked hip bone due to an injury sustained at the Western game.
He could barely move. He hobbled onto the court and made himself a home in the corner and waited for a pass, unnoticed by the Crusaders.
Palmore received a pass, shot and made a three-pointer. The crowd went wild. It was as if the team had won the state title.
Dalton Beighley, top scorer for the Trojans and senior, commented on the Palmore shot after the game.
“We had fun and played hard and made a lot of shots. The seniors went out to have fun on the last game. We were glad to get Billy out there to take a few shots. Quon and I asked coach if he could and the coach sent him out there.”
Hayes added, “Although we lost by 28 points, the boys had fun on their senior night. We talked to them at the beginning of the game and told them just to go out, have fun and make some memories that will last a lifetime. We planned to put Billy in at the end of the game just to enter him, sub him out and let him get a round of applause. We didn’t plan to get him a shot, but he got two attempts, which was pretty cool. Honestly, I was a little worried that he might hurt that hip again, but it all worked out.”
The team will graduate six seniors and of those six, four started regularly and three are the top shooters on the team.
The top three scorers for the Trojans season are Dalton Beighley, 250, Quon Cotton, 200 and Adam Brand with 132 points.
The majority of the team consisted of seven juniors and it will be up to them to lead next year.
Hayes says there are a lot of questions in the air for next season.
“As for our plans for next year, that is up in the air. I feel that the only way we can compete in this division is to get the kids in the gym more. We need a ton of work on fundamentals, especially ball handling and shooting.
“Pahrump will not be a competitive program until our kids learn the basic fundamentals of basketball. We will never be as big or athletic as the Vegas schools, so we need to be able to execute the fundamentals of basketball in order to be competitive.”