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Walker era begins as Trojans hit the field

Sprint! Back pedal! Shuffle! Those are the sounds coming from the Pahrump Valley High School football field in the early morning as the Trojans begin their summer workouts.

Head coach Thom Walker is entering his first season as the head of the Trojan football program after former head coach Joe Clayton retired from coaching earlier this year.

In addition to Pahrump Valley having a new head coach, they will also have a new-ish starting quarterback and new starting running backs.

Last season, sophomore Raymundo “Gunner” Cortez began as the starting quarterback for the Trojans. However, after a few shaky starts to begin the season, Cortez was moved to the backup role and then-junior Scott Oscarson was promoted to the starting position for the remainder of the season.

Following the school year, Cortez moved away from the Pahrump area, so he will no longer be playing for the Trojans.

As a senior, Oscarson is now in line to be the Day 1 starting quarterback for the Trojans for the 2022 season.

“I’m just trying to lead this team as much as possible,” Oscarson said of being the top QB for the Trojans. “Trying to get to the state championship this year.”

When I asked Oscarson what he thought of the team so far after the first two days of summer practice, he said that he’s really liking the intensity that the guys have brought each day and hopes that continues into the season.

“I’m just looking forward to that first game,” Oscarson said. “Hopefully we can go out there and perform really well.”

The main focus for the Trojan coaching staff right now is conditioning. Getting their bodies back into playing condition could be the hardest thing for the players to do all season. But when they reach that point, it will only get easier.

As I mentioned previously, quarterback wasn’t the only position to see new players from last season.

The Trojans lost both of their top two running backs from the 2021 season as Henry Amaya and Zack Cuellar both graduated this past spring.

The new backfield for Pahrump Valley will have the likes of junior Brennan Benedict and Makoa Batongbacal, among other players.

The Trojans haven’t begun to use their playbooks just yet. That will happen in the coming weeks. For now, it’s all about conditioning and getting the players back in shape to be able to handle the football activities on the field.

There will be two camps held throughout the month of July for the Trojans. One will be at their high school and the other will be held at Southern Utah University, which is their biggest camp.

The SUU camp will feature schools from all around the state of Utah and it will give the Trojans a chance to practice against other teams to see where they stand.

Pahrump Valley will open their 2022 season with a home game against the Western Warriors on Friday, Aug. 26.

Contact reporter Danny Smyth at dsmyth@pvtimes.com. Follow @the_dannysmyth on Twitter.

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