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Sentinel's Beighle receives Gatorade Player of the Year Award

Sam Beighle accepts his Gatorade Player of the Year honor during a Sentinel High school assembly.

Senior Sam Beighle received his Gatorade Player of the Year honor at Missoula Sentinel High School's spring assembly on Thursday morning. He's the fourth Sentinel boys basketball player to ever earn the honor and the first in ten years.

"I liked seeing the banner that was really cool, seeing that my name is going to be hung up here for quite a while," said Beighle. "So that will be cool. Maybe my kids or something, can come back and see it in 20 or 30 years and it will be something to remember."

The 6-foot-3 senior guard topped all of Class AA in scoring this year, averaging over 23 points per game. He also ranked top 10 in rebounds and assists while leading the Spartans to their first Western Conference title since 2010.

"It's pretty cool seeing the four years pay off and even the years before that," he saud. "It's kind of all summed up with my senior year and that award."

"He's been a leader by example over the last four years," said Sentinel head coach Jay Jagelski. "He's a kid that when you're doing workouts in the off-season he's the kid that's sweating through the workout. He's the one that's pushing himself. So he's been a great example for our younger kids these last few years."

As always the Gatorade Award goes to not only a top athlete but a top person. Beighle maintains a 3.96 GPA at Sentinel while also volunteering in the community.

"He has a lot of people that feel very highly about him and on top of that Sam got the job done in the classroom," said Jagelski. "That's one of those things that when you think of Gatorade Player of the Year we think about the skill only but there's a lot of other aspects that go into it such as the academics."

Beighle will continue his hardwoods career at the next level for Carroll College. He looks forward to not only the challenges on the court but also in academics.

"Academics is a big part of it," said Beighle. "It's a great school and it's going to be challenging. Whatever career I pursue is probably not going to be easy so that academic side is going to be very important."

"It's a great institution," added Jagelski, who is a former Carroll College basketball player himself. "He's going to walk out of Carroll with a pretty good basketball career I'm sure but he's also going to walk out of there with a pretty good degree and probably get a good job right away. So I'm excited for him. He's going to do great things. It should be a fun ride for him."

In coincidental big Carroll College basketball news on Thursday, Kurt Paulson was named the new head coach of the Saints.

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