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Lady Trojans fall to Moapa Valley at regionals, but still claim spot in state tournament

Pahrump Valley High School played host for the Southern Nevada 3A regional championship on Friday night, a matchup between the home school Pahrump Valley and the Moapa Valley Pirates.

This was the third straight season these two teams met in the championship game. The 2022 southern regional championship was played at Moapa Valley where the Pirates came away with a 35-29 victory over the Lady Trojans.

Pahrump Valley won the first meeting of the season between the two teams 39-26 when the Pirates came to visit in early January.

This would be a completely different game from the tip-off.

The Lady Trojans’ offense struggled mightily in the first half, especially in the first quarter.

In the two seasons I’ve covered the Trojans, this was possibly the worst offensive game I’ve ever seen them have.

The Pirates held Pahrump scoreless in the first quarter and led the Trojans 7-6 at the half.

The Trojans offense made just eight of their 30 shot attempts and committed 21 turnovers, both of which are very uncharacteristic of a Bob Hopkins-led team.

Normally, Pahrump Valley is the team forcing the turnovers.

Junior forward Abbigail Ramos got the Lady Trojans on the board with a second-quarter free throw. Ramos, who came into the game averaging nearly six points and over four rebounds per game, was held to just one point and two rebounds by the Pirates.

The Lady Trojans started coming to life in the third quarter.

After falling behind 10-6 after an opening 3-pointer by the Pirates to start the quarter, Pahrump Valley went on to outscore Moapa 8-2 the rest of the quarter to take a 14-12 lead entering the fourth quarter.

Guards Adryanna Avena and Paris Coleman combined to score all eight of the Trojans’ points in the third quarter.

Avena finished her night with a team-high seven points and had five steals. Coleman ended the game with five points and four rebounds.

After scoring a combined six points in the second and third quarter, the Pirate offense came out on fire in the fourth quarter.

They scored seven of the first nine points in the quarter to take a 19-16 lead and never looked back.

Moapa Valley was able to hold the Trojans offense to just four points over the final four minutes of the game, outscoring Pahrump Valley 14-6 in the final quarter.

The Lady Pirates went on to win the regional championship game 26-20 for their fourth regional championship in a row dating back to the 2018-19 season.

Despite not winning the regional championship, the Lady Trojans clinched their spot in the 3A state championship tournament by making it to the regional championship game.

The Nevada 3A state championship tournament will be played at the Lawlor Events Center in Reno on Friday and Saturday, Feb. 24-25.

Pahrump Valley will kick off the tournament with a semifinal matchup against the No. 1 seed from the north, Fernley High School.

The Vaqueros are entering the tournament with a 29-2 record this season. They won their northern regional championship with a 57-39 victory over the Lowry Buckaroos.

If the Trojans can pull off the upset, they’ll play the winner of Moapa Valley and Lowry on Saturday.

Friday’s game is scheduled to tip off at 3:40 p.m.

Contact sports writer/editor Danny Smyth at dsmyth@pvtimes.com. Follow @the_dannysmyth on Twitter.

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