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Payette High School

School Info
Conference: 3A Snake River Valley Conference
Classification: 3A

Head Coach: Rod Belknap

Years as Head Coach: 1st Season

Previous Experience: 11 years as frosh and JV head coach and varsity asst at Payette/Ontario

Record Last Year: 16-6

Assistant Coaches:
Kip McKenzie, Marc Allen

Returning Athletes:
Jonathan Herrera, G, 12; Bailey Reese, G/F, 12; Seth York, G, 12; Mariel Avila, G/F, 12; Riley McKenzie, F, 12; Tully Martin, F, 11; Andrew Ceja, F, 12; Gabe Serrano, F, 12

“Key Players” lost from last year:
Zane Allen, PG. Conference POY, 1st-team all-state, led team in PPG, RPG, APG and generally made team go.

Team Preview:

Written by: David Bashore

Payette finds itself in an interesting situation in 2015-16. One on hand, the Pirates are moving into life without Zane Allen, who graduated after being the Snake River Valley Conference’s Player of the Year and a first-team all-state selection.

Allen was the team’s point guard last season and led Payette in all three major statistical categories. The upshot for the Pirates is that they return eight players with varsity experience, including seven seniors, so they will have plenty of experience to lean on as they look to balance the floor and have several players step up as opposed to leaning heavily on just one. Jonathan Herrera, a two-year starter, will move to the point to facilitate the offense.

Payette has plenty of depth and balance, going potentially 10 deep with minimal drop-off. Defensively it’ll be the athleticism, length and depth that aids the Pirates going forward. They’ll look to capitalize on those assets to play more pressure man-to-man defense with the eye of forcing turnovers in the half-court set.

The Pirates certainly have some uncertainty as it relates to the offensive side of the floor, but the pieces are there for one player, or ideally multiple players, to take over the scoring load and keep the pressure off the rest of the team to force shots in order to outscore opponents.

Defensively, it looks like they have all they need to make a push in the Snake River Valley Conference. It’ll just be a matter of how long it takes for consistent offense to materialize.

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