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Spartan Shield

The student news site of Pleasant Valley High School

Spartan Shield

The student news site of Pleasant Valley High School

Spartan Shield

Former state champs get prepared for their new season

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Justin Clemons
Pleasant Valley Girls Basketball team practices in preparation for the upcoming season.

The former girls basketball state champions lace up their shoes as they approach the new season. These girls face high expectations as a result of last season’s incredible success.

Last year marked the first time in history the Pleasant Valley girls basketball team won the state championship. They finished with a perfect record, which was thought to be nearly impossible. 

“A major portion of our success last season was because of how close we were,” stated senior guard Jessie Clemons. “Everybody wanted each other to do well.” Their team chemistry was a big part in pushing them to the championship and overcoming the tough competition they met throughout the season.

Last year’s star player and Marquette commit Halle Vice graduated, leaving the team to deal with a huge loss. Her absence changes the team in all aspects of the game. “She’s the best player to put the Pleasant Valley uniform on, and without her there’s a lot of gaps and the obvious one is the scoring side of it,” said head coach Jennifer Goetz. 

Vice broke many records in the 2022-23 season. These records include points scored in a single game and points scored in a season.

“Halle was an incredible leader, she led by example. If she needed to kick you in the butt, she would kick you in the butt,” explained Clemons. Though Vice left the team, her impact has stuck with the girls. 

Due to their previous team leader gone, the team steps up to fill the holes left behind by Vice. “My mindset is to just get better every day,” said Clemons. She plans on motivating and leading the team by example as Vice had once done to her.

Despite the success of last season, the girls are working harder than ever to defend their championship title. “We want to keep putting banners up here and so far what I have seen with this group is it’s that same thing,” said Goetz. 

The girls will face tough competitors this year, with lots of young talent in the MAC and other non-conference rivals. But with their hard work ethic, toughness and  close team chemistry, the girls have a good shot at another state title. 

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About the Contributor
Justin Clemons
Justin Clemons, "Failed It" Anchor
Justin Clemons is a senior at Pleasant Valley High School and is one of the anchors for the “Nailed it, Failed it” show for the Spartan Shield. After high school, Justin plans on majoring in Marketing at Iowa State. In his free time, he enjoys hanging out with friends and family. He enjoys competing with his siblings in pickleball and wiffle ball during the summer. He also has fun working out and playing videogames with his friends. During the school year, Justin supports his sister and the girls basketball team by filming and keeping score of their games. 

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