Three weeks ago the Vermont scoring record for high school basketball stood at 2,477 points, but in the last twenty seconds of a semi-final game, that record, which stood for 31 years, was broken by Rochester High School senior Pavin Parrish.
Come next fall Parrish will trade in his navy blue high school uniform for #343 green and continue his basketball career as a Castleton Spartan.
Parrish announced Feb. 20 on twitter that he had made his decision. He was also accepted to Keene State, Colby Sawyer, and Norwich, but Castleton was the perfect fit.
“The basketball program is up and coming, and I want to be a part of that while continuing to represent Vermont,” Parrish said.
Staying close to home was also an important factor. Parrish wanted his family and friends who have supported him over the years to still be able to come watch him play.
Surpassing the 1,000-point mark as a sophomore, Parrish led his team to it’s first championship in 20 years his junior year. He finished his high school career with 2,479 points, dropping 45 in his record breaking game. In addition, he was named the 2014 Vermont Basketball Coaches Association player of the year.
On March 21, Parrish was also named the Gatorade Vermont Boy’s Basketball Player of the Year, an award that recognizes academic achievement and community service as well as athletic prowess.
“Parrish has maintained an A average in the classroom. President of his senior class, he has volunteered locally on behalf of community clean-up initiatives and youth basketball programs,” the Gatorade press release said.
Parrish is eager to make the transition to college ball, knowing he’ll have to up his game.
“The speed of the game is going to be a lot different coming from a small division four school…Transitioning into a new program is going to be a process and obviously different,” Parrish said. “I need to keep improving my game, and I know I will.”
Not only is Parrish number one on the court, he is also number one in his class and is in line to graduate as valedictorian. This will earn him free tuition at Castleton, or any other Vermont state school.
“I’m not sure what major I want to go into yet, but I’m leaning toward exercise science,” Parrish said. “I know it’s going to be difficult,” he said of the transition to college academics. “It’s going to be a learning process. I just hope I figure it out quickly!” he said.
Spartan point guard and graduating senior, Tyler Ackley said he wasn’t there the day Parrish visited to play pick up with the team, but he heard he was “solid.”
“He’s much better than me!” Ackley joked, when asked if Parrish would be replacing him.
Sophomore forward Chad Copeland, another Vermont native, has played on a team with Parrish in the past.
“I think having a kid like Pavin in the program is good because it shows upcoming in state kids with potential to play at the college level how important it is to stay close to home and represent your state,” Copeland said.
Copeland said he is excited to see what next season will bring for the team with the incoming freshman and returners.
“Pavin and I have been good friends for years, and I don’t think there is any other place I’d rather see him play,” Copeland said.