Senior lineman Zach Trieb’s selection to the Nevada Preps all-state second team in football highlighted the recognition of Pahrump Valley High School athletes for the fall season.
Five other Trojans were selected by Nevada Preps as honorable mention picks in their respective sports: Nico Velazquez in football, Jose Chavez in boys soccer, Anai Garcia in girls soccer, Jackie Stobbe in girls volleyball and Breanne Nygaard in girls golf.
Trieb, the Class 3A Southern Region Lineman of the Year, anchored an offensive line that fueled the Trojans’ school record-setting rushing attack. Pahrump Valley, which went 5-0 in the Sunset League, 7-4 overall and won a playoff game for the first time in 40 years, posted single-season highs in all rushing categories.
“You don’t see too many 300-pound kids with quick feet like he has,” Clayton said of Trieb. “Even on the defensive side of the ball, he would spin off of blocks and make tackles. As a 300-pounder, you don’t see that very often.”
The numbers were staggering. The Trojans amassed 3,145 rushing yards, smashing the old mark of 1,903 from 2006. They averaged 6.5 yards per carry, another record, and 285.9 yards per game, another record, both marks breaking previous highs from the 2005 season. Those previous records were set during seasons in which the Trojans won just three games.
Trieb’s recognition is significant in that most of the all-state picks represent Class 4A schools. In fact, the all-state first team for Nevada Preps includes only two players from Class 3A, both from state champion Churchill County, the team that ended Pahrump Valley’s season in the Class 3A semifinals.
Velazquez was the co-Offensive Player of the Year in the Class 3A Sunset League, and his numbers were spectacular. The senior rushed for 1,417 yards, 10th in the state and third in Class 3A, with 17 touchdowns. He totaled 1,622 all-purpose yards, including two kickoff returns for scores.
“If you appreciate the game, you appreciate how he plays,” Clayton said of Velazquez. “You don’t see too many 210-pound kids that have the feet he has and the vision he has.”
The girls soccer team was supposed to be in rebuilding mode but instead had a year very similar to 2017. The one difference was that this year’s edition captured the Class 3A Southern Region championship, largely on the strength of the defense.
Trojans coach Julie Carrington said she thought her entire defense deserved postseason recognition, but the highlight was Garcia netting Sunset League Defensive Player of the Year.
“She is a strong, hard-tackling, hard-working central defender with great speed,” Carrington said of Garcia. “She has developed an outstanding ability to read the game and always be in the right place to make a tackle. Plus she is comfortable in possession, and her distribution skills allow the team to build attacks from the back line.”
Garcia led a unit that helped the Trojans post a 16-5-1 record and finish in a tie for first place in the Sunset League. Twelve of the 16 wins were shutouts, and in Sunset League games they outscored opponents 35-6.
The boys soccer team fashioned a dramatic turnaround from 2017, going from 3-16-3 overall and 2-9-1 in the Sunset to 12-9-1 and 7-5, making the playoffs for the first time since 2007. Central to the turnaround was Chavez, a senior midfielder.
Chavez was a solid player as a junior, leading the team with 18 points and second on the team with 7 goals. Those numbers pale in comparison to what he did as a senior, as Chavez emerged as a dominant force with 33 goals and 13 assists.
Chavez absolutely feasted on the weaker teams on the schedule, scoring five times in a game twice and four goals in another game. But he was also good against the stronger teams as well, netting both goals in the Trojans’ biggest game of the year, a 2-1 win over Del Sol that locked up that elusive playoff berth.
The girls volleyball team had a similar season to the girls soccer team, finishing in a tie for first place in the Sunset League. Stobbe was one of the team’s senior leaders and a steadying force on the floor during a 17-12 season.
And she was at her best in the biggest matches of the year, the home-and-home against Mojave, the Trojans’ chief rival in the league. Stobbe recorded 19 assists in a dramatic five-set win over the Rattlers in the teams’ first meeting in Las Vegas, then topped that with 24 when the Rattlers evened the score in another five-set marathon in Pahrump.
Nygaard led the Trojans to the Class 3A Southern Region golf championship with rounds of 81 and 72 to finish second individually in the tournament, held at Casablanca and the Palms in Mesquite.
A week later, she was the top golfer from Southern Nevada at the Class 3A State Championship at Schaffer’s Mill in Truckee, California. Her rounds of 80 and 81 were good for third place as the Trojans finished six strokes behind Boulder City.