Grace High School
Conference: 1AD1 High Desert Conference
Classification: 1A D1
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Grace High School Team Bio
Head Coach: Rory Lloyd
Years as Head Coach: 11th Season
Record Last Year: 21-5
State Titles: 1955, 1959, 2003
Daxx Jorgensen, G, 12
Tanner Christensen, G, 11
Key Players lost from last year:
Photo By: Kelly Magee - #12 Tanner Christensen
Written by: Matt Harris
1AD1 High Desert Conference
PRESEASON COACHES POLL
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Daxx Jorgensen, Grace
Tanner Christensen, Grace
Mitch Cotant, Challis
Kyle Gregory, Challis
Ross Sheppeard, Challis
The High Desert Conference enters its final season as a two-team league, with Butte County set to join next season. But before that happens, plenty of action remains for league members Grace and Challis.
Grace had an excellent run last season, going 21-5 and earning the state third-place trophy over Valley 55-45. The Grizzlies were led by seniors Payton Lloyd and Jacob Aufdemorte, along with Landon Wheeler and Efrain Velasquez.
With those played now graduated, the team will look to incoming seniors Daxx Jorgensen and Tanner Christensen to lead the way for Grace. The Grizzlies, under the direction of head coach Rory Lloyd, will have to navigate a difficult non-conference schedule, which includes matchups with Bear Lake, Oakley, Aberdeen, Soda Springs, North Fremont, and West Side.
As for their counterparts to the north, the Challis Vikings, they believe that they can take back the conference crown and make a run at the state tournament this season.
Jerrod Farr enters his fifth season leading the Vikings as the bench boss and his team brings back plenty of talent for what they hope is an excellent run.
Back in the fold are seniors Justin Rembelski, Kyle Gregory and Dustin Stillwaugh, along with juniors Mitch Cotant, Ross Sheppeard, Garrett Millick, and Parker May. Sophomore Isaac Schwenke is also expected to make an impact.
“We are most excited about our depth and returning, experienced players this season,” said Farr. “We have a great group of athletic kids this year.”
The key to the season for Challis will be their ability to rebound the basketball and play defense, according to Farr.
“We need to improve our rebounding with our lack of size,” he said. “Our style of play is hard-nosed defense and we want to get up and down the floor on offense.”
With only two teams in the conference, Challis will play a wide-ranging non-conference schedule much like Grace. The Vikings have games scheduled against teams such as Salmon, Butte County, West Jefferson, Ririe, and North Fremont in hope that this will help prepare them for not only their conference schedule, but also the district tournament.
Those district tournament games will be held February 14th, 20th, and 22nd (if necessary) at West Jefferson High School. The conference receives only one bid to state, so the mantra is simply “Win And You’re In”.