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Boys basketball: Monarch’s Beauchamp named Player of the Year

With his peerless all-around game, Monarch's Ben Beauchamp has been named the boys basketball Player of the Year.
Paul Aiken
With his peerless all-around game, Monarch’s Ben Beauchamp has been named the boys basketball Player of the Year.

He made 23-footers look routine. Pull-up jumpers had opposing players looking for the baseline for the next inbound pass.

Ben Beauchamp could shoot with the best in all of Colorado. But for the Monarch boys basketball team, he was so much more.

“He did it all, and simply put there are just no holes in his game,” Monarch head coach Ken Niven said. “He can handle the ball, he’s a great passer, he was our leading rebounder and our led our team in steals, too.

“He didn’t have to score to help us win.”

Beauchamp did have some all-around impressive numbers for the 19-6 Coyotes, and for his effort the Black Hills State recruit has been named the 2014 Player of the Year. In addition to a 17.0 scoring average, Beauchamp averaged better then six rebounds, four assists and three steals a contest — all numbers that led a talented MHS team.

Heck, even his 18 blocked shots paced the Coyotes. Having high hopes for the team to succeed, Beauchamp certainly didn’t envision all those numbers, but he played as if he wanted to bear the weight of the team’s success on his shoulders.

“It meant an enormous amount,” Beauchamp said of his senior season. “After our team had such a good season my junior year, I had high hopes for the team, and myself, my senior year. I didn’t have exact numbers in mind for myself at the start of the season. All I knew is that I wanted to make it memorable, and I did.”

Some games might stick out more than others — Beauchamp said the home win against Fairview was his favorite game of the year — but a couple to point to numbers-wise include back-to-back 30-plus point games against Poudre and Greeley West; a 16-point, 13-rebound game against Fort Collins; and 24 points in his final game, a second-round playoff setback at Dakota Ridge.

His versatility was perhaps most exemplified against Frederick in the championship of the Prairie View Tournament, when he had 11 assists and 10 rebounds to offset the only game in which he didn’t go for double-digit points.

Niven said the one thing Beauchamp improved on was his turnover count, and he handled defensive pressure very well. Often the center of attention for opposing defenses, Beauchamp credited his teammates for helping him get looks.

“Well it helps when you have such athletic and crafty point guards in Jay (MacIntyre) and Sam (Fredricksmeyer), who can create so many open shots at will,” he said. “There were definitely games this year where I found it very tough to get open looks, but when one guy is struggling, there were always four other guys on the court that could score for our team.”

That depth, together with Beauchamp’s pure talent, allowed Monarch to overcome a devastating injury to a key component, Kyle Billingsley, in the sixth game of the season. The Coyotes went 12-4 in the Front Range League and did not suffer back-to-back losses all season.

“Obviously Kyle is a phenomenal player, and there is no doubt in my mind we would have gone further had he been on the floor with us the whole year,” Beauchamp said. “Personally, Kyle and I have been playing together for over 10 years, so it was devastating that we couldn’t finish it out together. We called ourselves Bonnie and Clyde on the court — him being Bonnie of course.”

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