Posted On: 04/25/20 6:47 PM
The two year block is up in the AIA and there are new region realignments. The 6A Desert Valley region had a number of contenders for the region title. This region did not move at all and will have Boulder Creek, Chaparral, Liberty, Mountain Ridge, Pinnacle, and Sandra Day O’Connor. Below is a preview of the region:
Boulder Creek finished fourth in this region last year by one game. While they were a contender in this region last year, they might have lose the most proven talent out of any program in the region. In fact, they will lose Tyrese RogersTyreseRogers6'0" | CGBoulder Creek | 2020StateAZ, who was 1st Team All-Region and the team’s leading scorer. In addition to Rogers, they lose their next three leading scorers.
While that might make the future look bleak in a region that will be formidable next year, Hayden Brewer and Owen Arnold played significant roles for this team last year and will be largely responsible for any success that the team has in this region and in 6A next year. This group is well coached and will compete.
Chaparral won this region last year and might have the most returning talent out of anyone in the region. Tyrese RogersTyreseRogers6'0" | CGBoulder Creek | 2020StateAZ, who was 1st Team All-Region and the team’s leading scorer. In addition to Rogers, they lose their next three leading scorers. While that might make the future look bleak in a region that will be formidable next year, Hayden Brewer and Owen Arnold played significant roles for this team last year and will be largely responsible for any success that the team has in this region and in 6A next year. This group is well coached and will compete. Chaparral Chaparral won this region last year and might have the most returning talent out of anyone in the region. Jevon HumphreyJevonHumphrey6'0" | SGChaparral | 2021StateAZ proved to be a capable scorer and shooter for the team last year. In addition to Humphrey, William Betteridge and Joey Greer also proved to be able to extend the floor while Sebastian Van Laarhoven demonstrated that he has the potential to be more than just a role player. Coach Peterson and Chaparral always find a way to compete regardless of who is returning. With that said, with this many prospects returning, they should be confident in their ability to compete for another region title. Liberty Coach Wood and this Liberty group did more than many expected they would do this past season. The group experienced adversity, but found ways to have success due in large part to the team’s ability to shoot it from deep in which they connected on 283 3s as a team. Miles Guilford has a quick release and is willing to let it fly from anywhere. He led the team in scoring last year and plays with a lot of confidence. In addition to Guilford, Patrick SteitzPatrickSteitz6'7" | PFLiberty | 2021StateAZ and Trevor Owens also have proven that they can have success at this level. After taking 2nd in this region last year, and with these three returning, Liberty should feel more than capable of winning this region title. Mountain Ridge Mountain Ridge has the most questions to answer due to the amount of talent that they are losing mixed with them finishing 5th in the region. With that said, Mountain Ridge is extremely well-coached. In fact, two of their three region wins last year were against Liberty, who finished 2nd in the region, and Pinnacle, who finished 3rd in the region. This team will not bring back a lot of senior leadership, pending some wholesale changes, as they only had three juniors on their roster this past season: Austin Clayton, Aiden Clayton, and Liam Reid. Pinnacle Pinnacle is always tough and will be fundamentally sound as well as disciplined. They will have some huge shoes to fill with Marcus Libman and Tosh Baker, who were key components of their back to back state championships, graduating. Both Baker and Libman were leaders for the football and basketball team who carried a championship mentality. That will be difficult to replace. With that said, the team brings back some skilled youthful prospects. Royce RamosRoyceRamos6'5" | PFPhhoenix Prep | 2023StateAZ played a huge role for this team down the stretch of the season despite only being a FR. As he gained more confidence, he demonstrated that he can potentially carry the torch for this team going forward. Ashton ReeseAshtonReese6'4" | SFAZ Compass Prep HS | 2023StateAZ, Elias White, and Luke GavinLukeGavin6'2" | SGPinnacle | 2022StateAZ bring varsity experience to the table as well. Sandra Day O’Connor O’Connor took their bumps and bruises this season after relying heavily on the same contributors for three years prior to this year’s team. However, this team is well-coached and will be competitive next season with a good core of the team returning. Garrett AndersonGarrettAnderson6'2" | SGCampo Verde | 2020StateAZ, who earned honorable mention in the region coaches voting, and Uyi-osa Irowa, who was voted to be on the 2nd team, will be looked to as key contributors next year. The improvement of these two prospects and the improved comfort of the other returners who played meaningful minutes last season will largely determine this team’s success in this tough region.