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Draper Journal

JDCHS boys basketball settling in to 5A play

Feb 05, 2024 02:26PM ● By Catherine Garrett

The Juan Diego Catholic High School boys basketball team is 4-1 in its first year in Region 4, a year after joining the Class 5A ranks. (Photo courtesy JD Media Club)

Last season marked the first year that the Juan Diego Catholic High School boys basketball ventured into play at the Class 5A level. The Soaring Eagle went 4-5 against that classification, winning a state tournament game—50-49 over Bountiful—before losing to eventual state champion Alta in the second round. 

This season, Juan Diego is 10-7 as of our press deadline and is new to Region 4 with a 5-1 showing thus far. The Soaring Eagle are trying to keep a string of nine straight region championships alive. Juan Diego’s one region loss was a one-point overtime setback to West Jordan Jan. 5.

“Our season has been solid,” said head coach Drew Trost, who is in his 11th year at JDCHS. “We’ve had some growing pains, but we are starting to put it together. This group is truly embracing our Effort, Attitude and Teamwork mentality. I’m very excited to see where this takes us.”

Junior forward Luke Meyer leads the team in scoring and rebounds with 17 and nine a game, respectively, while junior guard Stockton Young averages 11 points and senior guard Caden Fenger eight.

“This is definitely the deepest team I’ve had in quite a while,” Trost said. “There really are 12 guys that can all get legitimate varsity playing time. I truly feel comfortable putting that many guys in a varsity game, and I haven’t felt that way in a long time. This has led to some great competition in practice. They are committed to working hard and playing together. We have a very balanced attack where anyone is capable of having a big night.”

Seniors JJ Aguirre, Tevarii Pecqueux, juniors Hunter Chamberlain and Jake Wyatt and sophomores Rahiti Tinirauarii and Javier Aguirre have also been key players for the group this season.

“We have spent a lot of time working on our teamwork and executing our offense,” Trost said. “I have been proud of the guys and how they have embraced the team-first mentality. Our ability to execute and share the ball is a major key to our success.”

Juan Diego has defeated Westlake, Summit Academy, Bosco Tech (California), Judge, Timpanogos, West Jordan, Granger, Cyprus, Hunter and Taylorsville so far this season while losing to Skyline, Murray, Brighton, Faith Lutheran (Nevada), Meadows (Nevada), Oakland (California).

“We’ve been right there in the games we’ve lost and could have won,” Trost said. “But, we’re playing our best basketball right now and trying to ride that momentum. It’s an exciting thing to be building something special.”

Also on the JDCHS team this year are Zach Abraham, Keurik Bare, Anthony Barnard, Jack Clark, Evan Colarusso, Deng Deng, Garang Deng, Devan James, Aidan Janiga, Chris Jimerson, Luke Lowery, Jordan Montoya, Trey Nicolodemos, Andrei Olivo, Cameron Orchard, Darion Otto, Easton Putzke, Niko Salgado, Kingston Taban, Sam Vansice and Anthony Young.

“I always want our guys to develop a relationship with God, to learn about life, to grow as young men, to maximize their potential and to enjoy the season,” Trost said. “We also have a goal of advancing to the venue in the state tournament. We are continuing to build something very special here.”

Juan Diego finishes out the season against Taylorsville, West Jordan, Granger, Cyprus, Hunter and Kearns before the 5A state tournament begins Feb. 21.


The JDCHS girls team defeated Orem 42-40 in its fourth game of the season and also beat Hillcrest 35-26 at the end of November. But, the Soaring Eagle have struggled to win since and currently stands at 2-18 overall and 0-5 in Region 14 play.

Juan Diego has been led in scoring this year by sophomore center Aven Kuath with nearly six points a game, while sophomore guard Ella Sabit averages five.

Also on the JDCHS squad this season are Elly Clark, Madyson Cruz, Olivia Fry, Tea Gostevcic, Avie Hernandez, Kaitlin Hulverson, Maile Mataele, Malena Modtland, Ellie Palmer, Zoe Pappas, Olivia Prosper, Rahiti Tinirauarii, Ava Tita, Gig Trujillo, Leini Tui, Sienna Vonderohe and Denver Whaley.

The team is also scheduled to face Providence Hall , Layton Christian, Summit Academy and Judge to end the regular season. λ