The 2016-17 Eureka Junior High Vandal boy’s basketball team was one for the ages. The season was full of memorable, moments, games and everlasting memories. The team mixed with youthfulness yet with a never quit, never worry and never back down mentality took on teams from all across central Nevada and finished to the tune of 14 victories and only 3 measly defeats. The Vandals averaged over 40 points a game and gave up just around 22. Plus with two 1st place trophies to add to the collection it’s safe to say that this team will go down as one of the best ever to put on the green and gold.
16 kids came out and stuck it out throughout the whole season. The team made up of five 8th graders, five 7th graders and six 6th graders. Key contributors included Chris Dolan who led the team in scoring plus with his never ending motor always set the tone for everyone else. Wyatt Anderson was our top defender and his quick thinking and reflexes led to numerous turnovers and easy baskets caused by our relentless press defense. Kids such as Payton Mentabery, Gavyn Bowling, Brandon Lee, Spencer Talbot, Johnny Schweble, and Jake Baumann all helped the team out by doing the little things in practice and in games. But the success of the team didn’t end with them. Every other player all helped out to make the starters better and in the process helped themselves become better players for the future.
This team was able to accomplish something that has not been done by any previous junior high squad in quite some time and that was to sweep the postseason tournaments. It started with the league tournament in our own backyard by taking down Lund, Beatty and White Pine to make sure the hardware stayed home. The following week in Tonopah the Vandals ventured out to bag home another trophy. There they took out Round Mountain, Beatty and Battle Mountain to complete the sweep and capture another championship.
The season couldn’t have been a success without the support of the community and parents. Coach Irma and I would like to thank everyone from bus drivers, concession workers, officials and everyone else who helped with practices and gave us unlimited support and admiration. These kids worked extremely hard and it was a thing of beauty to see the community and parents rally behind them.
Vandal Nation is alive and strong within the community. As for my departing 8th graders Chris Dolan, Wyatt Anderson, Brandon Lee, Jake Baumann, and Johnny Schweble we thank you for your commitment and dedication to the program and the game of basketball. We wish you guys nothing but the best and we are excited to see you continue your careers at the high school level. With the talent moving up there is no reason for them not to compete for state championships. They will be that good.
As for our returning players let’s continue to build on this past season and bring home more victories and trophies. We have established a solid foundation and program and we are excited to continue that success.