At Meadows YMCA on Tuesday, the Pahranagat Valley High School’s boys basketball team charged out of the gate and scorched the Word of Life Eagles 17-4 in the first quarter in a battle of the top two teams in the Division IV Southern League.
However, the Eagles regrouped and outscored the Panthers in the next three quarters, led by Trent McCall’s 20 points, as they rallied to top Pahranagat Valley 54-52.
Paul Kelker added 14 points for Word of Life, Elijah Hoye added 12 points for the Eagles, who led by five before a late three-pointer by Pahranagat Valley. Word of Life (10-3, 6-0), was able to inbound the ball and run out the clock.
Jacob Roemer led Pahranagat Valley with 12 points. Shawn Wadsworth and Christian Higbee each scored 10 for the Panthers (12-8, 4-2).
Alamo coach Mike Strong said, “We came out big and jumped all over them in the first quarter, and we were still up 10 at halftime. But we came out tentative in the third quarter, (being outscored 21-13), turned the ball over too many times, and missed some free throws, which I think could have been the difference in the game. Some areas that we still have to clean up a little bit and get better. But we showed we can compete with anybody in the league.”
Last Friday, PVHS won at Beatty 39-26, as they controlled the whole game. “We were up 18-20 in the fourth quarter. Even though we outrebounded them, we did not shoot real well and turned the ball over too many times,” Strong said. Jacob Roemer had 13 points to lead the team.
The Panthers also knocked off Adelson 40-39 on Jan. 21 at home after Roemer sank the go ahead free throw with one second left.
Roemer had 12 points, and Culen Highbe scored 11 in the win for Pahranagat Valley.
“We did a really good job defensively, which the kids executed well,” Strong said. “There were some runs on both ends, they’d get a little one, then we’d have one.”
Alamo has now played all of the three other contenders for the league’s top two playoff seeds, losing to Spring Mountain and Word of Life by two points each, and beating Adelson by one.
Spring Mountain and Adelson played each other last night. If Adelson lost, and the Panthers can win out the remainder of the league season, they will hold the No. 3 seed in the playoffs and host a first round game against the No. 5 seed, and then likely need to face Spring Mountain, the defending league and state champion, in the league tournament semifinals at Desert Pines in Las Vegas Feb. 19.
This week, Pahranagat hosts Tonopah (4-11, 2-3) tonight and plays at Round Mountain ((11-8, 3-3) on Saturday.