For the past two seasons, the Trinity boys basketball team has denied the Beulah Miners a spot in the state tournament. However this year, the Miners broke through.
The road was not easy. This trip to the Class B Boys’ state tournament is a crowning achievement for the loaded senior class.
“We knew we wanted to make it to the state tournament,” Derek Ferebee said, “but after starting 3-3, we were kind of thinking, ‘I don’t know if we can make it.'”
Those three early losses were by a combined 11 points, so the all-senior starting five got together to right the ship.
“We seniors talked and said we have to get our stuff together,” Aaron Vallejo said.
And it worked. The Miners went on a 13-game winning streak and are now back at state for the first time in four years. And they’ve been successful this year without having a true big man. 6′-1″ Aaron Vallejo is that guy down low, and what he lacks in size, he makes up for in effort.
“My goal is to be the best defender out there, thinking that no one’s going to score on me,” Vallejo said.
Jacob Weigel is their perimeter threat, shooting over 40 percent from downtown this year, while Derek Ferebee leads the point and averages over 20 points a game. Logan Miller adds his floater and perimeter shot, and Mason Dolbec rounds out the starters with a high passing IQ.
“I’m known for giving my teammates chances to score,” Dolbec said. “I’m not much of an offensive scorer myself, but if I have an open shot, I’ll take it.”
None of these guys have made state before, but Dolbec’s older brother was part of the 2012 championship team.
“I was part of the storming of the court,” Dolbec said, “and I’ve always wanted to do it since.”
And the seniors say they have a good chance of doing it, because they all play to each other’s strengths on the floor.
“We’ve grown so much together,” Vallejo said, “We know what we’re capable of. We’ve been playing with each other for years now.”
“It’d be an unbelievable feeling to win a state championship,” Dolbec said, “especially with the five seniors. We’ve been playing together since second grade traveling basketball, so it’d be a great experience.”
On Mar. 15, Beulah faces defending champ Hillsboro-Central Valley Thursday at 6:30 p.m.