The tennis team placed second at the regional tournament hosted by St. James on Monday, May 6. Juniors Eric Howes and Joe Vincent placed fourth as a doubles team and qualified for state. Senior Rafa Seguro Trujillo placed second as a single and qualified for state.
Seniors Joey Perkins and Nathan Stacy also competed in doubles and junior Connor Mills competed in singles.
Tennis coach Eric Ammerman thinks that the ones who are going to state will do well.
“I think that [Trujillo] can finish in the top five [at state],” Ammerman said. “With [Howes] and [Vincent] it depends if they do their best. They need to reach their peak in order to win.”
Howes thinks that they played their best at regionals.
“It went well and we did what we needed to do,” Howes said.
“The team we played had a great attitude and it was a good time,” Vincent said.
The ones who qualified for state will compete on Friday, May 10-Saturday, May 11 in Emporia.
Eight athletes signed to play college sports in a group signing ceremony on Wednesday, April 17.
Senior Weston Noyes signed to Hannibal-LaGrange University for golf and is glad to have finally made his decision.
“It’s reassuring knowing you have your decision already made and you don’t have to stress about it the way other people do,” Noyes said. “[I hope] to get better throughout my college career and get the chance to go Division I or Division II.”
Senior Chris Stack signed to swim for William Jewell College and is the first Jaguar swimmer to sign to swim in college.
“It just feels good knowing how much work I’ve put in over the years,” Stack said. “Also, just being the first swimmer to sign for Mill Valley just feels amazing, to be a part of school history. I just couldn’t be happier.”
The following athletes signed:
Senior Hadley Tharp, Fort Hays State University, golf
Noyes, Hannibal-LaGrange University, golf
Senior Joylyn Kennedy, Baker University, track and field
Senior Carlie Howe, Columbia College, soccer
Senior Ryan Bath, Benedictine College, football
Senior Mackenzie Conklin, Doane College, basketball
Senior Nathan Stacy, Truman University, basketball
Stack, William Jewell College, swim
After a defeat against Shawnee Mission South High School in the state semifinal game, the boys basketball team rebounded to take third place, beating defending state champions Kapaun Mt. Carmel 75-70 on Saturday, March 9. This is the highest the boys team has ever finished at state.
From the start of the game, the team was successful at making shots, jumping to a lead of 26-12 at the end of the first quarter.
“To start the game, we started off hot,” senior forward Nathan Stacy said. “Our shots were falling tonight, and they weren’t last night.”
Head coach Justin Bogart agrees.
“We got off to a great start, made shots and got stops on defense,” Bogart said.
By halftime, the Jaguars led 40-29, but in the second half Kapaun cut the lead. In the final minute, Mill Valley was up by just 72-70, until freshman guard Logan Koch made three free throws, clinching the 75-70 win.
“[As Kapaun caught up], we just kept trusting each other, trusting our teammates, and we did that and came out victorious,” Stacy said.
Going into the game, the team had to shake off its loss to South the night before, and Bogart said he wanted the team to understand that they could go farther than any previous boys basketball team at Mill Valley.
“Here’s a chance to erase our loss last night and a chance to finish with a win,” Bogart said. “We had a chance to be the best basketball team in Mill Valley history.”
Junior guard Wyatt Voorhes said he also just wanted to end the season with a win.
“It was a tough loss last night, and only two teams get to end the season on a win, so we wanted to be that team,” Voorhes said. “As a team, we just came out with a lot of energy. I feel like we had them beat before the game even started. We just stuck to our game plan and made free throws. That’s how you win games.”
While is goal was the state championship, Stacy is still happy with how the season ended.
“I think we’ll be remembered as the best team at Mill Valley, until someone gets better,” Stacy said. “The best team to have played so far.”
A tough opponent and poor shooting by the Jaguars led to a 70-57 loss to Shawnee Mission South in the state semifinals on Friday, March 8.
South scored the first points of the game with a three-point basket, and the Jaguars struggled against the Raider’s press defense early in the game. South managed to score several more three-point shots and led 21-8 at the end of the first quarter.
The Jaguars continued to struggle in the second quarter, down 35-23 by halftime.
“I can’t remember one time we turned it over against their press defense, which was the main goal,” senior forward Nathan Stacy said.
At the start of the third quarter, only sophomore forward Patrick Muldoon was playing without fouls, who picked up his first early in the quarter. By the end of the quarter, junior guard Wyatt Voorhes, senior guard Kyle Kain and Stacy were all playing with three fouls. Mill Valley had a total of eight team fouls, while South had just three team fouls at the time. South led 51-33 at the end of the quarter.
Mill Valley struggled to make three-point shots throughout the game; Koch made the team’s only three-point shot in the third quarter.
“We just needed some more shots to fall, and for theirs not to fall,” Stacy said. “It didn’t change how we played the game, it changed the outcome of the game. If we would have hit our shots, it would have been a close game down to the wire.”
In the fourth quarter, Stacy scored 11 straight points in an attempt to change the outcome.
“It looked like we were going to lose and I didn’t want to lose, so I started doing anything I could to win,” Stacy said.
The team will play for third place on Saturday, March 9 at 2 p.m.against either Lansing or Kapaun-Mt. Carmel, and Kain is hopeful for the team’s success.
“I don’t think we’re going to change anything,” Kain said. “I just think we’re going to play our game.”
The Jaguars won their first round of state play against the Andover High School Trojans, 56-46, on Thursday, March 7 in Topeka.
This is the first time in school history both the boys and girls teams have advanced to the state semifinals. The boys will have a rematch with Shawnee Mission South High School at 4:45p.m. on Friday, March 7 and the girls will play Kapaun-Mt. Carmel at 6:30p.m.
Senior guard Kyle Kain said the Jaguars followed their game plan well.
“We made our shots,” Kain said. “I think we could have executed the plays a little better. We could have been better in transition, but I think we played great defense and we made our shots.”
The first points of the game were scored by sophomore forward Patrick Muldoon with an assist by senior forward Nathan Stacy. Kain followed with a steal on Andover’s next possession and junior guard Wyatt Voorhes made the shot to bring the score to 4-0, Jaguars.
Senior guard Austin Moylan said the intensity at the beginning of the game got the Jaguars off to a good start.
“The start is always fun,” Moylan said. “That was a blast.”
After the Trojans scored their first points after an offensive rebound, freshman guard Logan Koch followed with two free throws and a three-pointer.
“It was fun,” Koch said. “It was a great experience; we played great. What we do in practice every day comes out in the game.”
Ending the first quarter with Jaguars leading 15-11, the Trojans scored the first two points of the second quarter. The Jaguars then extended the lead, with help to three-pointers by Stacy and Voorhees. The first half ended with the Jaguars leading 27-21.
After exchanging two-point plays with the Jaguars, Andover scored six points in a row and took the lead at 29-27. The Jaguars regained the lead at 31-29 after two free throws by Voorhes, but Andover answered with a three to move the score to 32-31, Trojans.
Even though the Jaguars were struggling, head coach Justin Bogart said they stepped up and answered when the Trojans began to threaten.
“We were really tough,” Bogart said. “We did exactly what we wanted to do which was get rebounds, make layups and make free throws. We were tough enough to do that.”
In the middle of the third quarter, Bogart called a timeout and the Jaguars went on a 10-3 run to re-capture the lead and end the quarter, 42-34.
“The biggest turning point in the game was when coach called a time out … and told us to get stops on defense,” Muldoon said. “We came out, scored a quick layup and got two stops on defense. That was pretty much the turning point when we took the lead.”
The Trojans came within five with 1:46 remaining in the game and the score at 48-43, Jaguars. Koch, Stacy and Voorhes combined for eight free throws to keep the Jaguars in the lead. Koch scored five of the free throws and created a turnover by drawing a charge at the end of the game to give the control back to the Jaguars.
“[The charge was] going out to my boy Aaron Craft, my favorite player,” Koch said. “He takes them all the time.”
Muldoon attributed a lot of the success at the end of the game to Koch.
“We finished really well, especially with our freshman taking care of the ball and sinking free throws,” Muldoon said. “That’s our bread and butter. “
Although he sees the impact Koch had on the game, Muldoon thinks that this game means the most to the seniors.
“They deserve it more than anybody on our team,” Muldoon said. “They’ve worked so hard the past four years and this is finally their chance.”
Moylan agrees, although he is focusing more on the end of the tournament than the end of the year.
“[I’m looking forward to] moving on to the next game and continuing our season,” Moylan said. “It’s not over yet. It’s been a great career and I’m just not ready for it to be over but I’m glad we’ve gotten to where we’ve gotten.”
Senior Jake Theis has been a part of the team since his freshman year, but has not been able to play his senior year after suffering an injury during football season. However, he has still remained a part of the team. Theis said that his excitement at the team’s win is not any less than it would be if her were able to play.
“It’s sad and all but being around the guys I love and seeing winning makes it a lot easier for me,” Theis said. “Seeing how much success we’re having as a team makes it not so bad. Right now it’s exciting. Win and go on or lose and go home, and we keep on winning. I feel like Mill Valley’s now going to be on the map for winning it all. We’ll be in the state tournament for the next couple years.”
However, the Jaguars will face an undefeated SMSouth team, which they lost to 58-39 on Friday, Dec. 14.
“I’m excited because the first time didn’t go so well but I think it will be a lot closer,” Kain said.
Moylan recognizes that the game will be tough, but agrees with Kain.
“We’ve already played them once this year and I’m looking forward to playing them again,” Moylan said. “We’ve just got to play a good game.”
After beating the Washington High School Wildcats 65-50 on Saturday, March 2, the boys basketball team qualified for the state tournament for the first time in nine years.
The high scorer of the night was senior forward Nathan Stacy, who finished with 22 points, 11 rebounds and eight assists.
“I was excited because four years of hard work for me and my senior teammates finally paid off by getting to go to state,” Stacy said. “We put in so much hard work and effort in the off season. During the season we work on so many fundamentals that teams can’t score against us. And if they can score against us, we will beat them.”
Head coach Justin Bogart said that senior guard Kyle Kain’s three-pointer in the fourth quarter was the moment he realized the Jaguars would be headed to state.
“[Kain’s] three in the corner was probably the biggest play of the game,” Bogart said. “That sent a message to everybody that we’re going to get this thing finished.”
Kain, who contributed six points to the team’s win, felt confident after his three, but attributes Stacy’s break-away dunk as his moment of realization that the team would win.
“I felt pretty confident that we were going to win because that shot really extended the lead,” Kain said. “But [Stacy’s] dunk was the sure moment for me. I think everyone thought that was the final blow.”
Stacy agrees that his dunk with 1:09 remaining in the game to put the Jaguars up by 13 was an exciting moment.
“When I got the dunk, I knew we were going to state,” Stacy said. “I thought it was going to be a very close battle and the game was going to go down to the wire but we ended up winning comfortably.”
The Jaguars held the Wildcats at a safe distance for most of the game after getting off to a quick start. They led by 12 at halftime and the Wildcats never really threatened during the second half.
“We started so well,” Bogart said. “The guys were confident in our game plan and we made shots early. Once we started stopping shots at the other end, we got very confident and played at a high level all night. [But] you’re always concerned [until it’s over]. With four minutes to go, we were only up by 12 and it just seemed that four minutes were going to take forever.”
After putting in four years of work for the basketball program, sophomore forward Pat Muldoon is excited that the seniors get to experience this season’s success.
“[Making it to state] was our goal as a team,” Muldoon said. “We put so much hard work into it. I’m happy for all of the seniors. They deserve it more than anyone else on the team.”
Bogart also expressed his excitement for the seniors.
“It was just elation,” Bogart said. “I was really excited for our players. I think of all the effort they put in and it pays off. I couldn’t ask for anything better for those kids.”
After the buzzer sounded at the end of the game, the packed student section rushed the court.
“I thought they were going to rush the court,” Stacy said. “I thought our fan support was incredible. I had never seen so many people at a game before. When they rushed the court, it was exhilarating for the players to be surrounded by our fans.”
Junior Gabby Fangman, who was in the stands, agrees with Stacy.
“It was awesome,” Fangman said. “I wanted to storm the court right away.”
Looking forward, Muldoon feels that there will be pressure to win in the tournament.
“I’m looking forward to the exposure to the other teams,” Muldoon said. “I’m nervous about putting our whole season on the line for one game. It’s win or go home.”
If the Jaguars win their first game, they will most likely face the undefeated Shawnee Mission South, who they lost to 58-39 on Friday, Dec. 14.
“I think Shawnee Mission South will be a close game,” Kain said. “I think it will be a lot closer than last time.”
Bogart is also confident that the team is prepared for the state tournament.
“We’ve been preparing for the championship game since the first day,” Bogart said. “Having been there once and winning that first game, I would be disappointed if we lost. I would still be proud, [but in the end], we are going there to win it. We prepare to win the first game because if you don’t win that one there’s nothing else to play for.”
Kain feels that much of the team’s success is coming because of the players’ close relationships.
“I think we have a lot of chemistry together,” Kain said. “We’ve played a lot together. Last year we had no seniors, so we’ve had two years to build that relationship on the court.”
Monday, Feb.25 to Friday, March 1
This photo was chosen for photo of the week because it captures an important moment in the sub-state varsity boys basketball game. The photo contains great facial expression and interesting action.
The Jaguars brought home a 72-63 win against the Leavenworth High School Pioneers on Thursday, Feb. 28 that will advance them to the sub-state championship.
Senior Nathan Stacy said that Leavenworth was a good preparation for their sub-state championship.
“I think both teams have similar play styles, where Washington is clearly the better team,” Stacy said. “But, it will prepare us to play another quick, athletic team.”
The first quarter was dominated by many missed scoring opportunities and turnovers and ended with a score of 8-8.
The tie after first quarter between the teams showed Stacy what needs to be improved for the game tomorrow.
The Pioneers began scoring numerous three-pointers to capture a 27-23 lead at the half.
The Jaguars came back to start the second half strong, led by Stacy. He accumulated 10 points in the third quarter and helped hold the lead at five points three times during the third quarter. The third quarter ended 47-44, Jaguars.
The Jaguars answered in the fourth quarter with their biggest lead of the game, outscoring the Pioneers 25-19 in the fourth quarter.
The Jaguars will play at home in the sub-state championship game against Washington High School on Saturday, March 2 at 7 p.m.
Stacy said that this game was a good way of showing what needs to be improved for the game tomorrow.
“We want to be more patient on offense and really feed the ball down low,” Stacy said. “We need to work on boxing out and rebounding, too.”
The Jaguars defeated their league rivals, the Bonner Springs High School Braves, at home 71-41 on Tuesday, Feb. 12.
Junior Wyatt Voorhes scored the first points of the game with a three-pointer, en route to a 9-0 start. The Braves were slow to add points but were fouled and made their first point via a free throw. The first quarter ended with a score of 17-8, Jaguars.
Voorhes said that this game had one of the most explosive first quarters he has ever seen.
“We’ve been having great practices lately, and we were really pumped for this game,” Voorhes said. “We just came out with more intensity than they did, which helped us bury them early.”
Senior Kyle Kain scored a three-pointer within a few seconds of the start of the second quarter. The Braves added five points within the next minute to bring the score to 22-13, Jaguars. Sophomore Patrick Muldoon added two points of his 12 from the night via a layup to bring the score to 24-13, Jaguars. The first half ended with a score of 37-16, Jaguars.
Junior Drew Boatwright was the breakout star of the night and contributed 18 points to the game, 12 of which were four three-pointers in a row during the third quarter. The third quarter ended with a score of 66-32, Jaguars.
The Braves added another nine points in the fourth quarter and the game ended with a final score of 71-41.
Senior Nathan Stacy compiled 14 points and 13 rebounds while Muldoon added 12 points and Voorhes and Kain added 10 apiece.
The Jaguars next game is at home against Lansing High School on Friday, Feb. 15 at 7 p.m.
Often the most anticipated and well-attended basketball game of the year is against Bonner Springs High School, the Jaguars’ district rival. This season, the teams met at Bonner on Friday, Jan. 11, the Jaguar boys winning 64 – 42 and girls winning 47 – 21. The teams will meet again when the Jaguars play at home on Friday, Feb. 12.
Senior forward Stephanie Lichtenauer looks forward to the competitiveness of each game against the Braves.
“I think it is [a rivalry],” Lichtenauer said. “It is always a close game against Bonner and it’s always a great feeling when we come out with the [win].”
The Jaguars are leading the all-time contest against the Braves 20 – 8. Because of this seemingly one-sided margin, some students and players have questioned whether Bonner should still be considered the school’s rival.
“I think the rivalry is definitely not as even as some others,” senior forward Nathan Stacy said. “But the Bonner games are still always really intense.”
Senior Blake Miles agrees that even if the scores are often skewed to favor the Jaguars, the students continue to have strong feelings about the outcomes of the games.
“I think the rivalry is fueled with very strong emotions from both sides,” Miles said. “I personally have dangerously passionate negative feelings towards Bonner, [but I] think the rivalry is good for competition.”
Stacy thinks that regardless of the level of competition, the two schools will continue to be rivals because the fans will continue to have an interest.
“People get really into the games and take it seriously,” Stacy said. “Even if it’s not close, it’s always a big deal to beat Bonner.”
Since head coach Justin Bogart was coaching at the school when it opened, he remembers when the Jaguars and Braves first began their rivalry.
“It really began when [the Braves] joined the Kaw Valley League and we played them two times a year in basketball,” Bogart said. “Also, just the natural location and proximity of the schools to each other made it a natural rivalry … and there are some differences between the schools as well in terms of which areas the schools serve. There are some cultural issues at work there.”
Some of those issues were most prevalent when some Jaguar fans came to a game dressed in white trash bags in 2008, when former student Miranda Fields was a sophomore, in response to the Braves students dressing in preppy clothing the previous game.
“The rivalry was intense and playing Bonner was always a fun game to watch,” Fields said. “I don’t think the students that wore trash bags were trying to be malicious but [it seemed that way] to many adults and other students, [and] the joke was not taken lightly. At the time it didn’t bother me very much but I thought we should show more class.”
Bogart agrees with Fields’ perception of the rivalry.
“It enflamed the rivalry,” Bogart said. “That’s probably when it took on its legend. Yes, [the trash bags were] probably in poor taste … [But at the same time] I think that it’s almost a myth that it has not been a good-natured rivalry. I’ve not seen animosity at an actual school-sponsored event. The schools have taken some jabs at each other but I’ve never seen it to be hostile.”