High School: All-area team
Tracy Abrams, Mount Carmel, Senior, Guard
A two-time all-area selection, Abrams is one of the top point guards in the nation. He averaged 17.8 points, 6.2 rebounds, 4.6 assists and 2.7 steals for the Caravan. He’s ranked No. 87 overall in the Class of 2011 by ESPN Recruiting. He’s headed to Illinois and is expected to the Illini’s point guard of the future.
“He’s an outstanding leader, responsible for 89 varsity victories over his four years on the team,” Mount Carmel coach Mike Flaherty said. “He made this year's team success possible by sacrificing individual statistics for the benefit of the team. He will be a great college player due to his work ethic and desire to win.”
Aaron Armstead, Hales Franciscan, Senior, Guard
Armstead was the senior leader for the Spartans and helped them to a Class 2A state championship. He also averaged a team-leading 17 points and four assists. He led the Spartans in scoring in 13 of their 29 wins, including a game-high 19 points in the Spartans’ state semifinal win. He’s signed with Wisconsin-Green Bay.
“He really came in the beginning of the year focused on having the opportunity to get back downstate,” Hales Franciscan coach Gary London said. “That was one of his major goals this year. He really had a determination about him this whole year. The one thing about him is he’s always been a good decision-maker on the floor. He was the leader on the team.”
Wayne Blackshear, Morgan Park, Senior, Guard
A two-time all-area selection, Blackshear was in the running for ESPNChicago.com’s Player of the Year award. He was again among the nation’s best shooting guards this past season. He averaged 32 points, 15 rebounds, five assists and five blocks. He is ranked No. 17 overall in the Class of 2011 by ESPN Recruiting. He was selected as a McDonald’s All-American and will play at Louisville next season.
“Wayne is the best player in the state of Illinois regardless of class,” Morgan Park coach Nick Irvin said. “He’s a leader. He gets his team involved. It’s not about Wayne getting 40 points. It’s not about Wayne getting 20 rebounds. He’s about winning.”
Julius Brown, Hillcrest, Senior, Guard
Brown did as much for Hillcrest as anyone did for their team this season. He averaged 20 points, three rebounds, five assists and four steals while putting Hillcrest among the top teams in the state. He was the South Suburban Blue Conference Player of the year. He’ll play at Toledo next season.
“Julius was a great high school basketball player because he was very coachable and he always worked on getting better,” Hillcrest coach Don Houston said. “He was also a tough player who was very poised under pressure situations.”
Ryan Boatright, East Aurora, Senior, Guard
A two-time all-area selection, Boatright is the ESPNChicago.com Player of the Year. No one in the state was as consistently dominant against top talent and more entertaining than Boatright was this season. He scored 63 points against Proviso West. He had 55 points, 10 rebounds and 10 steals in a win over St. Charles North. He helped the Tomcats defeat top-ranked Benet in the playoffs. He averaged 32 points, six rebounds, three assists and three steals. He’ll play next season at Connecticut.
“Boatright is an incredible player,” Benet coach Gene Heidkamp said. “My hat’s off to him. He’s a phenomenal player. He’s going to have a great career at UConn. No doubt about that.”
Quinton Chievous, Notre Dame, Senior, Forward
Chievous solidified himself as one of the top players in the area this past season. His game continued to grow while he averaged 20 points and nine rebounds and shot 53 percent from the field. He’s being recruited by Detroit, NC State, Nebraska, Penn State, Southern Illinois, Virginia Tech and others.
“Quinton was our best player last year,” Notre Dame coach Tom Les said. “We knew his improvement from his sophomore year to his junior year was huge. I felt if we could get maybe 1/3 of that same improvement from his junior year to senior year, he was going to have an impact year.”
Crockett was one of the season’s biggest surprises. He had always been a talented player, but he took his game to a whole different level this season. He averaged 21 points, seven rebounds and 2.5 steals for the highly-ranked Warriors. He also shot 47 percent from the field. He’ll play at DePaul next season.
“Jamee has been tremendous all season,” Crete-Monee coach Matt Ryndak said. “His development has gone hand in hand with the success we have. His perimeter skills are much improved, and he has been the main ingredient in why we have such strong team chemistry. Jamee has proven himself to be one of the true elite players in our state.”
Anthony Davis, Perspectives, Senior, Forward
On a better team, Davis would have swept everyone’s player of the year awards this season. Although his team struggled, Davis averaged 32 points, 19 rebounds and seven blocks. He had one game of 30 points, 15 rebounds, 10 assists and 11 blocks. He’s ranked the No.2 overall player in the Class of 2011 by ESPN Recruiting. He was selected as a McDonald’s All-American and will play at Kentucky next season.
“Davis came on the scene last spring and has never looked back,” ESPN recruiting coordinator Reggie Rankin said. “From an unknown to being considered for the top spot in the class and signing with Kentucky, Davis has off-the-charts’ upside and is the toughest match up in high school basketball because of his size, length and guard skills.”
Deshawn Delaney, Carter, Senior, Forward
Delaney was nearly unstoppable inside on both ends of the court. He averaged 20 points, 12 rebounds and four blocks for the Challengers. In a win over Morgan Park, he had 22 points, 15 rebounds and 12 blocks. He’s uncommitted.
“He’s just a high-motor kid, who’s all about production,” City/Suburban Hoops Report recruiting analyst Joe Henricksen said. “He’s labeled a tweener, but he always finds a way to get things done. He’s really evolved as a player over the course of his career.”
Nnanna Egwu, St. Ignatius, Senior, Center
Egwu dominated the interior like few big men did this season. He not only blocked shots and grabbed rebounds as he has done in the past, Egwu was also a scoring force this season. He averaged 18 points, seven rebounds and six blocks. He is ranked No. 84 in the Class of 2011 by ESPN Recruiting. He’ll play at Illinois next season.
“I was just impressed to see his play from January to the end of the season,” St. Ignatius coach Rich Kehoe said. “He averaged 23 points a game for the last 10 games. He just got better all the time.”
Mycheal Henry, Orr, Senior, Forward
A two-time all-area selection, Henry was one of the area’s best shooters this season. With his smooth jumper, he averaged 25 points a game. He also went for 11 rebounds. He had 25 points, 11 rebounds and five blocks in a win over Marshall for a regional title. He is ranked No. 77 in the Class of 2011 by ESPN Recruiting. He will play at Illinois next season.
“He’s going to be one of the Illinois’ best offensive players next year,” Orr coach Lou Adams said. “He shoots the ball extremely well. He’s going to a great player at Illinois.”
Johnny Hill, Glenbard East, Senior, Guard
A two-time all-area selection, Hill followed a strong junior year with an even bigger senior one. He averaged 20.9 points, 5.4 rebounds and 2.6 assists while helping the Rams downstate for the first time since 1964. He’ll play at Illinois State next season.
“I think he’s been one of most unsung players in his class,” City/Suburban Hoops Report recruiting analyst Joe Henricksen said. “He’s highly overlooked and not talked about enough. The kid is an absolute basketball player who does so many things on both ends of the court. He’s unselfish and finds ways to make big plays in big moments.”
Kaminsky was one of the best big men in the state this season. He’s as versatile as they come at his 6-foot-11 size. He averaged 15 points, 9.7 rebounds, 2.8 assists and 4.2 blocks while helping the Redwings to a national ranking. He’s headed to play at Wisconsin next season.
“Frank was a major factor on both ends of the floor for us,” Benet coach Gene Heidkamp said. “He was able to score and set up teammates out of the post offensively, and block and alter shots defensively. His rebounding was crucial to our success.”
Julian Lewis, Homewood-Flossmoor, Senior, Guard
Lewis was the leader and best player on one of the best teams in the state. He averaged 16 points and six rebounds for the Vikings this season. He was an all-tournament selection at the Proviso West holiday tournament. He had 28 points on 9 of 11 shooting against Proviso East in the tournament’s semifinals.
“He’s another versatile kid who brings at the high school level both his strength and his ability to defend multiple positions,” City/Suburban Hoops Report recruiting analyst Joe Henricksen said. “He’s a player. He doesn’t put up huge numbers, but he’s a stat stuff. He was the leader of a very good H-F team.”
Abdel Nader, Niles North, Senior, Forward
Nader was one of the area’s biggest scoring machines this season. He went over 30 points a number of times and averaged 23 points for the year. He also added 8.2 rebounds a game. He led the Vikings to a sectional championship. He was committed to New Mexico, but has since reopened his recruitment.
“He’s had all the skills offensively, and he continues to develop more,” Niles North coach Glenn Olson said. “This year he’s become a great all-around player. He’s improved in every facet of the game.”
Jabari Parker, Simeon, Sophomore, Forward
Parker was in the running for ESPNChicago.com Player of the Year. Despite only being a sophomore, Parker was the best player on one of the best teams in the state. He averaged 15.3 points, six rebounds and 2.1 assists. He’s ranked the No. 2 sophomore in the country by ESPN Recruiting and is being recruited by nearly everyone.
“When all is said and done, he could be a dominant player like LeBron or Amare Stoudemire,” Simeon coach Robert Smith said. “He has the potential to be one of those dominant individual players.”
Darius Paul, Warren, Junior, Forward
Paul moved out of his older brother and Illinois sophomore guard Brandon’s shadows this season. Paul helped the Blue Devils downstate by averaging team-bests of 11.2 points and 7.2 rebounds. He had 17 points and 17 rebounds in Warren’s sectional championship win. He’s being recruited by a number of schools.
“Darius is an extremely versatile and athletic kid who is our leading scorer, leading rebounder and second in assists,” Warren coach Chuck Ramsey said. “He’s really improved a lot as the season has progressed.”
Powell Jr. stepped into the spotlight this season. He kept Brooks afloat when Wisconsin recruit George Marshall was injured and was key to the Eagles winning the Public League championship and advancing downstate. He averaged 20 points, seven assists and three steals. He’s being recruiting by a number of Division I programs.
“Mike Powell Jr. is a true floor general,” Brooks coach Bobby Locke said. “A throwback point guard. He not only makes plays for himself, but is equally as unselfish deferring to others for the sake of team success. His true strength is his physical and mental toughness defensively. Offense sells tickets, but defense wins championships.”
Mike Shaw, De La Salle, Senior, Forward
A two-time all-area selection, Shaw was once again the Meteors’ leader. He averaged 13 points, seven rebounds, three assists and two steals while helping De La Salle to a Catholic League championship. He is ranked No. 79 in the Class of 2011 by ESPN Recruiting. He’ll play at Illinois next season.
“I think he was the glue to our team,” De La Salle coach Tom White said. “Whatever the team needed, he was able to do that. I don’t think everyone can do that.”
Aaron Simpson, North Chicago, Junior, Guard
Simpson put up big numbers for a big numbers’ team. The Warhawks averaged nearly 70 points a game, and Simpson was good for 22.5 points a night. He also averaged 5.6 points and 3.9 assists while helping North Chicago downstate. He’s considered one of the top juniors in the state.
“On a given night, he’s a streaky scorer, but he’s an explosive scorer,” City/Suburban Hoops Report recruiting analyst Joe Henricksen said. “He can beat you with his jump shot as well as getting to the rim. He’s a tough matchup at the high school level.”
David Sobolewski, Benet, Senior, Guard
A two-time all-area selection, Sobolewski was in the running for ESPNChicago.com’s Player of the Year award. He was as dominant as any guard in the state this season. He averaged 15.2 points, 6.1 assists, 3.8 rebounds and 2.7 steals while leading Benet to 29 consecutive wins and a national ranking. He’s a Northwestern recruit and could be Michael Thompson’s successor.
“Dave was outstanding at handling pressure, scoring, and creating shots for his teammates,” Benet coach Gene Heidkamp said. “He consistently made others better. His leadership and decision making were important factors in our success.”
Keifer Sykes, Marshall, Senior, Guard
Sykes was one of the Public League’s top players this season. He averaged 18 points, five assists and three steals for the Commandos. He also shot 50 percent from 3-point range. He’s play next season at Wisconsin-Green Bay.
“He’s just an absolute winner,” City/Suburban Hoops Report recruiting analyst Joe Henricksen said. “When Keifer’s got the ball in his hands, you know positive things are going to happen. He can both create for himself and his teammate. I think he’s a warrior.”
Sam Thompson, Whitney Young, Senior, Guard
Thompson was one of the state’s most versatile players again this season. He averaged 16.1 points, 6.7 rebounds, 4.5 assists, 2.3 steals and 4.1 blocks for the Dolphins. He is ranked No. 45 overall in the Class of 2011 by ESPN Recruiting. He will play next season at Ohio State.
“Sam had a great season this year and was a vital asset to our program,” Whitney Young coach Tyrone Slaughter said. “He did whatever was needed of him from game to game. If we needed him to put points on the board, he scored like no other. If we needed him to play lockdown defense and to be a shot blocking presence, he did just that. What makes Sam special is not the fact that he is a marvelous all-around, athletic ballplayer who throws down stunning dunks on a game to game basis, but the fact that he is a great leader with a heart of gold.”
Demetrius Tolliver, Farragut, Senior, Guard
Tolliver was one of the bigger surprises in the Pubic League this season. Behind his versatile play, the Admirals were one of the best teams in the city and state. He led Farragut to a sectional title. He averaged 19 points, 10 rebounds, five assists, three blocks and three steals.
“He is another unsung player,” City/Suburban Hoops Report recruiting analyst Joe Henricksen said. “He’s probably one of the biggest stock raisers in the senior class. He’s a kid who does anything to help his team win. He’s one of the top defensive players in the city and one of the absolute toughest kids.”
Zeisloft was again one of the top shooters and scorers in the area. He averaged 16 points, six rebounds, four assists and two steals while helping Lyons to another winning season. He shot 53 percent from the field and 40 percent form 3-point range. He’ll play at Illinois State next season.
“He’s one of the top five shooters in the state,” City/Suburban Hoops Report recruiting analyst Joe Henricksen said. “He’s become more than just a shooter. He’s evolved into an all-around scorer. He was the go-to guy for a really good team.”
The Chicago area produces some of the country’s top girls basketball talent, and this season was no different.
The 2010-2011 ESPNChicago.com all-area high school girls basketball team is full of national stars again.
Whitney Adams, Montini, Senior, Forward
Few can match Adams’ outside game. She knocked down 61 3-pointers for the state-bound Broncos. She also averaged 10.8 points and 5.3 rebounds. She had 22 points and 10 rebounds against Bolingbrook. She is the 35th-ranked forward in the country by ESPN and is signed with North Carolina.
“I’m very proud of Ms. Adams and the growth she has made in four years,” Montini coach Jason Nichols said. “She’s a quality kid and a quality player.”
Crawford led Proviso East to its best season ever. Behind her 18.1 points, 5.7 rebounds, 3.6 steals and 1.1 blocks, the Pirates won their first sectional title in the program’s history. She was also named the team’s MVP for the third consecutive season. She is ESPN’s 34th-ranked guard and will play at Illinois next season.
“Ivory has had an outstanding career as a three-year starter,” Proviso East coach Ezra PridGeon said. “She’s a combo guard, who is very unselfish, athletic, has great ball-handling skills and a player who knows how to score.”
Octavia Crump, Zion-Benton, Junior, Forward
Crump was a near double-double machine all season for the Zee-Bees. She averaged 12.1 points and 8.7 rebounds while helping Zion-Benton downstate for the first time. She had some of her biggest games during the playoffs, including a 14-point, 14-rebound performance in the super-sectionals. She’s uncommitted.
“She is a special player with her athletic quickness and speed,” Zion-Benton coach Tanya Johnson said. “She has been our leading rebounder all season - a monster on the boards. Octavia presents a match-up nightmare for most opposing coaches. I'm just glad she's on our team.”
Melissa Dixon, Johnsburg, Senior, Guard
Dixon finished as the all-time leading scorer in McHenry County with 2,146 points. She also set school career records with 273 steals and 276 3-pointers. She averaged 23.4 points, 3.7 rebounds, 2.6 assists and 2.7 steals this season for the Skyhawks, which won a regional title. She is ESPN’s 79th ranked guard and is an Iowa recruit.</p<
“She made a commitment to be the best she could be, and her work ethic and dedication to the sport was unlike any others,” Johnsburg coach Mike Toussaint said. “A true competitor in every way, she had a great career and was a pleasure to coach. Iowa is getting a winner. But even more important is that she is a classy young lady. We're going to miss her.”
Katie Faught, Loyola, Senior, Guard
Amidst plenty of competition, Faught was named the GCAC player of the year. She averaged 12.5 points, 4.2 rebounds, 2.5 assists and two steals for the Ramblers. She also shot 40 percent from 3-point range. She is ESPN’s 90th-ranked guard and will play next season at Loyola.
“She earned many individual honors throughout her career, but I believe her biggest accomplishment was winning 68 games during that three-year span,” Loyola coach Jeremy Schoenecker. “Katie has a tremendous work ethic which was infectious to many student-athletes in our program.”
Jacki Gulczynski, Bartlett, Senior, Forward
Gulczynski was the leader for one of the best teams in the state. She averaged 14 points, seven rebounds and one block this season for Bartlett, which went 28-2. She was named the Upstate 8 player of the year for the second consecutive season. She also made the ESPNChicago.com all-area team last season. She is ESPN’s 34th-ranked guard and will play at Wisconsin next season.
“Jacki is dedicated, hard working, intelligent, loyal and a very talented basketball player,” Bartlett coach Denise Sarna said. “Jacki really understands the game. She takes her knowledge and uses it to make herself and her team better. She has grown into a leader who demands a lot of herself, her team and teammates.”
Shannise Heady, Hillcrest, Junior, Forward
Heady keyed Hillcrest’s second consecutive run downstate. She averaged 15 points, six rebounds, six assists and four steals this season. She was the first back-to-back Hillcrest holiday tournament MVP since 1998. She was also named the conference player of the year. She is uncommitted.
“Shannise is a difference-maker on both ends of the floor and is one of the most dynamic performers we have ever been fortunate to have at Hillcrest,” Hillcrest coach John Maniatis said.
Whitney Holloway, Montini, Senior, Guard
Holloway is one of the top point guards in the country. She averaged 14.1 points and 4.6 assists this season while leading Montini downstate for the second consecutive season. She scored a season-high 28 points against Marian Catholic. She was an all-area selection last year as well. She is ESPN’s 25th-ranked guard and is a Notre Dame recruit.
“She’s brilliant on the floor and off the floor,” Montini coach Jason Nichols said. “She made me a better coach.”
Claire Jakubicek, Cary-Grove, Senior, Forward
Jakubicek was one the area’s most potent scorers this season. She averaged 19.5 points to go along with 3.8 rebounds, 2.6 assists, 3.7 steals and one block. She owns the school’s career scoring record. She will play at Northern Illinois next season.
“She is a game-changer who is the most consistent player I have ever seen,” Cary-Grove coach Rod Saffert said. “I cannot recall her ever missing a game. Her attendance to practices and games is unmatched. We were never out of a game with her on the court. She is certainly one of the best, if not the best, player to come through this program.”
Chanise Jenkins, Whitney Young, Senior, Guard
Jenkins is one of the top guards in the country. She averaged 16.5 points, three assists, four rebounds and three steals while helping Whitney Young to another trip downstate. She is ranked 64th overall in the Class of 2011 by ESPN and will play at DePaul next season.
“Chanise missed the majority of her junior season due to a knee injury, but with hard work over the offseason she is back leading our team and playing in one of the best backcourts in the country,” Whitney Young coach Corry Irvin said.
Along with Chanise Jenkins, Johnson formed one of the nation’s top backcourts. Johnson averaged 15 points and five assists for the 27-2 Dolphins this season. She also made ESPNChicago’s all-area team last season. She is the 55th ranked overall player in the Class of 2011 by ESPN and will play at Michigan State next season.
“Kiana has run the show for the team all season long,” Whitney Young coach Corry Irvin said. “She is able to change her game to what we need her to do, whether it's scoring, passing or getting a defensive stop.”
Abby Kirchoff, Barrington Senior, Guard
Kirchoff keyed Barrington’s surprise run to the Mundelein sectional championship. Kirchoff was clutch in Barrington’s sectional semifinal win over Fremd, hitting 9 of 10 free throws in the final two minutes. She also had 24 points and four steals in the Fillies’ regional championship win. She had back-to-back games of 31 and 35 points in January. She was named the Mid-Suburban League West player of the year.
Simone Law, Marian Catholic, Senior, Forward
A two-time all-area selection, Law was one of the premier post players in the state. She averaged 17.8 points, 8.9 rebounds, 1.5 steals and 1.4 blocks while helping the Spartans to another sectional title. She has led Marian Catholic in scoring and rebounding for the past three seasons. She will play at Loyola in Chicago.
“In my opinion, she is one of the best post players in the state,” Marian Catholic coach Annie Basic said. “She has unbelievable touch around the basket and is so aggressive on the boards. Her best basketball days are still ahead of her. Simone will be hard to replace.”
Rebekah Llorens, Grayslake Central, Senior, Center
Llorens was a major reason why Grayslake Central went 28-4 and won a sectional championship this season. She averaged 14.5 points and 8.9 rebounds. She shot 59 percent from the field. She had 37 points and 19 rebounds against Johnsburg in a sectional championship win. She is uncommitted.
"Bekah was a dominant presence for us,” Grayslake Central coach Steve Ikenn said. “Whether it was scoring, rebounding, taking a charge or just being a hard-working leader, she was always giving it her all. Bekah is a great player and a pleasure to coach."
Jewell Loyd, Niles West, Junior, Guard
Loyd is one of the most dangerous offensive players in the country. She scored 28.8 points a game this season. She also averaged 15.2 rebounds, 4.1 assists, 4.5 steals and 3.1 blocks for the Wolves. She had 24 double-doubles and one triple-double this season. She had a season-high of 46 points and scored 40-plus points five times. She was an all-area selection as a sophomore, too. She is ranked No. 6 overall in the Class of 2012 by ESPN and is being recruited by nearly every top program in the country.
“Jewell is the best player in the great state of Illinois,” Niles West coach Tony Konsewicz. “The most impressive stat amongst her many jaw-dropping numbers is Jewell's points per game average. Night in night out, teams know that they have to stop Jewell Loyd. She is double-, and, at times, tripled-teamed on the offensive side of the floor and yet she averaged an amazing 28.8 points per game and 4.1 assists per game. She is truly very special and the best player in the state.”
Ariel Massengale, Bolingbrook, Senior, Guard
Massengale is the ESPNChicago.com 2010-2011 Player of the Year. As one of nation’s top point guards, she averaged 14.2 points, 3.6 rebounds and 6.3 assists for the top-ranked Raiders. She will be the state’s lone representative in the McDonald’s All-American girls game. Bolingbrook has gone 103-11 and won two state championships and will be shooting for a third this weekend in Massengale’s four seasons on varsity. She was an all-area selection last season. She is the 4th ranked player in the Class of 2011 by ESPN and will play next season at Tennessee.
“Ariel was a true leader for us, “ Bolingbrook coach Tony Smith said. “She took ownership of this team. It was great to see her grow as a leader.”
Jasmine Matthews, Marian Catholic, Senior, Guard
“Jasmine is one is the hardest workers I have coached in the Marian Catholic program,” Marian Catholic coach Annie Basic said. “She has been our floor captain her last two years. She has worked very hard to get herself to where she is right now and it shows.”
Megan Podkowa, Trinity, Junior, Forward
An all-area selection as a sophomore, Podkowa continued to take her game to another level this season. She led the Blazers in nearly every statistical category while helping them a school-record 28 wins. She averaged 18 points, 10 rebounds, three steals and three blocks. She had 38 points and 15 rebounds against Marist. She is being recruited by a number of Big Ten and Big East schools.
“There are great players in the Chicago area, but I humbly feel Megan is the most complete team player out there,” Trinity coach Eddie Stritzel said. “Megan will only get better as she is only a junior. The nucleus of our team is back next year, and we should be able to contend for state run once again.”
Megan Rogowski, Hersey, Senior, Guard
Rogowski will go down as one of the state’s most prolific scorers. She scored 2,365 points in her career, ranking in the state’s top 50 all-time leaders. A two-time all-area selection, she averaged 23.6 points, 5.8 rebounds, 3.1 assists and 1.7 steals this season. She also made 89 3-pointers. She is the 67th-ranked guard by ESPN and will play for DePaul next season.
“With 13 school records, Megan has set a new standard in excellence,” Hersey coach Mary Fendley said. “Her work ethic, commitment, and tremendous abilities will hopefully inspire future Huskies for years to come.”
JeTaun Rouse, Marist, Sophomore, Guard
Rouse is the lone sophomore on the all-area team this season. She averaged 16 points for Marist, which was among the area’s top teams this season. She was an all-conference selection and is being recruited by some of the nation’s top programs.
“JeTaun is a very special player and had a great sophomore year for Marist High School,” Marist coach Mary Pat Connolly said. “She matured not only on the basketball floor, but as a very good teammate. JeTaun can score points, but she is just as thrilled throwing a great pass. I think what I liked most about JeTaun's game this year is she realized, very humbly, that she has the ability to change a game.”
Erika Tatum, Bishop McNamara, Senior, Forward
Tatum again was key to the Fighting Irish advancing downstate in Class 2A. She averaged 15.4 points and 4.8 rebounds this season. She had eight games of 20-plus points and scored 16 of her team’s 29 points in its third-place victory.
“Erika was a great scorer, scoring over 1,000 points in her career,” Bishop McNamara coach Jeff Bennett said. “She led Bishop McNamara her junior and senior years to a fourth-place and third-place finish in the 2A state tournament at Redbird Arena.”
Savannah Trees, Libertyville, Senior, Guard
Trees was the catalyst behind Libertyville’s undefeated regular season and 29-1 overall season. She averaged 13.8 points, 3.5 steals and 2.5 steals while running the point. She also shot 55% from 3-point range. She is uncommitted and is being recruited by schools at all levels.
“Savannah is one of the most talented, competitive and hardest working players that I have had the pleasure of coaching,” Libertyville coach Kathie Swanson said. “She did a great job of leading us as point guard and always stepped up in the biggest moments. We could always count on her to provide steadiness and intelligence on the court.”
Morgan Tuck, Bolingbrook, Junior, Forward
Tuck is one of the top juniors in the country. She averaged 20.7 points and 6.3 rebounds for the top-ranked Raiders this season. She was also named to the all-area team as a sophomore. She is ESPN’s No. 12 overall player in the Class of 2012 and is committed to Connecticut.
“Morgan Tuck has been a double-double every night,” Bolingbrook coach Tony Smith said. “She was a force inside all year long. Morgan is one of the best post players in the 2012 class.”
Sarah Williams, Fenwick, Senior, Guard
Despite graduating last year’s ESPNChicago Player of the Year Tricia Liston, Fenwick remained one of the area’s top teams thanks to Williams. She averaged 14.2 points, 5.8 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 2.5 steals this season for the Friars, which won a regional title. She will play next season at Lehigh.
“She not only absorbed some of the offensive load that graduated with Tricia, but she was also clutch in some big games this year,” Fenwick coach Dave Power said. “She just had a great year. She was one of the reasons Fenwick was a surprise this year. People thought we would be a little bit down. We made a great run.”
Kat Yelle, Geneva, Senior, Guard
A two-time all-area selection, Yelle averaged 17.5 points, three assists and 3.3 steals this season for the Vikings, who won a sectional championship. She was named the Upstate 8 River MVP. She started all four years and led Geneva to a 109-17 record. She is ESPN’s 98th ranked guard and will play at Ohio next season.
“She has continued to be our floor leader game after game,” Geneva coach Gina Nolan said. “Kat's tenacity on the court and her willingness to do whatever it takes for our team to be successful have been amazing to watch.”