Panthers Reunite in Annual Hope Game Victory

by Chandler Patrick and Jared Feldman

An annual tradition has returned to the courts of Palo Verde on Feb. 3: The Hope Game. Played to honor Coach Clarke Sr., The Hope Game raises money for a scholarship for one lucky student, and all proceeds from the night benefit the cause.

“It means alot to keep doing this is his name considering the circumstances,” says Clarke.

Junior Sydney Huddleston played her best and scored five points as well as senior Ariana Davis, who battled it out and added 13 points to the overall score. The girls fought hard but ended the game with a score of 32-52.

The boys came out bounding, ready for a fight. Despite setbacks in the first part of the game, Panthers overcame struggles with a little bit of hope, coming out on top with a final score of 70-58. Senior James Camp came through with 21 points and numerous assists along with fellow senior Cole Hendershot, who contributed 8 points as well.

“We played one of our greatest games all year. We followed the game plan and played together as a team,” says Bellinger.

At halftime, the panthers found themselves in a very close game leading 27-25. Palo started the second half out hot knocking down shot after shot, making a significant swing compared to the first quarter. Whatever was discussed in that locker room during halftime was highly effective

Overall, The Hope Game has benefited many students and has become a center of pride for Panther Basketball players and coaches alike. While Coach Clarke Sr., may no longer be with us, his legacy continues to live on strong each and every year.

“It’s always been a good event with a good crowd and the student section was awesome,” says Clarke.