Valor Christian High School has long been touted for its success on the football field, but in recent years its boys basketball program that has been increasingly successful. After losing in the 4A championship game two years ago, the Eagles dominated the 2017 tournament to win their first ever state title.
Head coach Troy Pachner is at the forefront of that success. In his three years at Valor, Pachner has transformed the Eagles into a dominant force in 4A basketball. The previous coach of D’Evelyn joined Home Grown Sports on Mile High Sports AM 1340 | FM 104.7 to discuss how Valor has grown under his watch.
“Although I have that grounding in foundational fundamentals, I would actually say that we have embraced some of the modern trends in the game,” Pachner said. “I have great respect for the fundamentals, but I embrace some of the cutting-edge trends. It’s all about mathematics.”
One of the things Pachner credits for Valor’s success is fully embracing the dribble-drive offense. During a time when other high schools were reluctant to implement the unfamiliar system, Pachner’s ability to get ahead of the curve as been monumental in his success.
“I’ve been to 25 of these Nike clinics over the years, and Vance Walberg was speaking on the dribble-drive,” Pachenr said. “He gets a lot of credit for being the inventor of the system; that’s the guy that I looked to. We read every book, watched every video series. I would say that we were really one of the first in the state to really embrace it.”
Though Pachner does believe in accepting the new trends of the game, that doesn’t prevent him from recognizing when those trends are not working. Now more than ever, basketball revolves around the 3-point shot. However, that was not a strength of last year’s state championship team, and Pachner realized it.
“Last year we had a state championship team and didn’t even make 100 3-pointers on the year, which is certainly unheard of in any system I’ve ever coached,” Pachner said. “It wasn’t our strength; we went to our athleticism and length and just found a way [to win].”
Listen to the full interview with Pachner, including insight from his 17 years at D’Evelyn, in the podcast below.
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