Heading into AWA, PrepAZ.com will feature players and their thoughts on their own "Road to AWA". Un-edited so you know what really goes on in the players mind, in their dream of a State Championship.
Starting out with 1a Life Schools Danny Clougherty.
1a Life School's Road to AWA.
"Last season after are 2nd round loss to Joesph City at America West Arena,
the underclassmen all agreed we want to be back. 3 starters came
back-Clougherty(myself),Outlaw, and Johnson. Pentecost move up from playing
alot off the bench to a starting role this year. And Mudick, my best friend,
came to our school from Mesa Mountain View. Our lineup looked great- with
quickness within Outlaw, Johnson,and Mudick, shooting with Pentecost,Outlaw,
and Mudick, Rebounding with Clougherty, Johnson, and Outlaw. The first day
we thought damn lets go get that state title. We knew who we have to
concentrate on. First off we had to take care of region by revenging last
year and this year's football loss to Salome, then take on the favorite
Joseph City. I guaruntee you that they are reading about what we are doin.
They know we're coming. Games begin- we start out great, winning our first 3
games before the Round Valley tourney. We went 3-1 with wins over 1a
Seligman, 2a Duncan, and 3a Window Rock, and finishing with a loss against
Safford. After the loss, half of our team had tears in our eyes,including
me, and the other half was just disappointed. Coach Kain saw we had all
heart but we had no gas in our tank for Safford. He told us we accomplished
what we came up there to do. Soon after are team chant would be "FAMILY".
That night I thought about the loss, Safford reminded me about Joseph City.
Safford and Joesph City are very similar, both have great guards and both
have a very tall team. I thought about who did what versus Safford. Johnson
who is one of our leading scorers was held to 2 or 4 points becuz of the
height that Safford possessed. Pentecost missed a wide open layup with 2
mintues left in the game when we were down by 3. Those were the 2 things
that stuck out in my head. I just thought all night how we would get past
Joseph City if these two things happened. Everyone has bin working hard
since the loss. Eric has stepped up his scoring and has bin making alot of
free throws and Jeff hasnt missed a layup in a game since. Today is January
29, actually its my 18th birthday, and we have won 10 straight games. Salome
is in 2 days and are team is ready to accomplish goal 1- take it to Salome.
If we win this game we will clinch the 1a west region champs. Then a couple
easy games to finalize offenses and defenses before region. But Feb. 11th
Salome comes to our house to finish up the regular season. If everything
goes well we will choose to host regionals at PDSD. Regionals are Feb.
13-15. State is Feb. 18-22. Part 2 will be coming after regionals."