The Starmount boys and the East Wilkes girls each placed three players on the Mountain Valley 1A/2A Athletic Conference team.
Starmount’s James Ashley, Kyler Gregory and Luke Shore each made all-conference, while teammates Trey Bryant and Gunner Cass each made honorable mention.
East Wilkes’ Jada McCrimmon, McKenzie Stokes and ShaNisha White each made all-conference. They also had two teammates make honorable mention, Kennedy Lester and Laken Pardue.
Also making the all-conference boys team was Elkin’s Kody King. Josiah Blevins and Tyrek Hayes, King’s teammates, were named honorable mention.
Also making the all-conference girls team was Elkin’s Courtney Beals. MaKayla Dimmette and Miracle Walters, Beals’ teammates, were name honorable mention.
East Wilkes’ Will Jolly and Jathan Sales were honorable mentions for the men, while Starmount’s Kenzie Harris and Whitney Pardue were honorable mentions for the women.
Ashley, Starmount Coach Rocky Horton said, is a “solid guard” who “sees the game at a different speed. Shore, Horton said, “gets stuck guarding the best player on the other team. He also takes care of the ball.” Although guards, Ashley and Shore each averaged more than four rebounds per game. Ashley and Shore are both juniors.
Gregory, a sophomore, is “still developing,” Horton said. “We’re looking for big things from him. Gregory averaged 12 points and eight rebounds per game.
Horton called Bryant “a rebounding machine. If he gets it while under the volleyball line, he’s going to finish it.” Cass, a senior, was the team’s glue, Horton said. “A good offensive threat who can finish around the basket,” he added.
McCrimmon led the Cardinals in three statistical categories: points (15), rebounds (seven), and assists (five) per game. White averaged 11 points, three rebounds, and three assists per game, while Stokes averaged 11, five, and two respectively.
East Wilkes Coach Matt Campell characterized his honorable mention selections as a “hard worker” (Pardue) and a “competitor” (Lester).
King, a junior, led Elkin with 21 points and eight rebounds, two blocks, and two steals per game. “He’s our go-to guy in almost any situation,” Elkin Coach Kenneth Abrams said. “We were in a lot of close games because of him.”
Abrams called Blevins, a senior, “a hardnosed ballplayer” and Hayes, also a senior, “a great rebounder.” He said both did a lot of things for the Buckin’ Elks that “they don’t put in the paper.” I’m proud of all three of those guys,” Abrams said. “They’re great team players.”
Beals, a senior, played four positions and drew the assignment of guarding the opponent’s best post player, Elkin Coach Derek Carter said. “She’s been an all-round player; a great kid to coach,” he added.
Dimmette, Carter said, is a “scorer who likes to take it to the basket. She was also one of our top rebounders.” Walters, a sophomore, played all five positions. Carter said Walters led the team in scoring, blocks, free-throw shooting, and was tied for the team lead in rebounding.
Jolly, a junior, led the Cardinals in scoring and was second in rebounding before getting hurt late in the year.
Sales, a senior, “really came into his own the last five or six games of the season,” East Wilkes Coach Justin Call said. “Everything he does, he does hard; a defensive presence at all times.”
Sales plans to go into the Marines following graduation, Call said.
Starmount Coach Mike Dodson called Pardue, a senior, “the epitome of hard work. She turned herself into a basketball player. She was our rock this year.” Of Harris, Dodson said, “If we had won a game, I would have nominated her for All-Conference.” Harris averaged seven points and seven rebounds per game as a freshman.
Alleghany’s Fabian Santos was named men’s Player of the Year, while his coach, Tommy McKnight, was named men’s Coach of the Year.
North Wilkes’ Alley Shumate was named women’s Player of the Year, while her coach, Wendy Shumate, was named women’s Coach of the Year.
The players and coaches are selected by conference coaches.
Jim Fuller may be reached at 336-835-1513 or on Twitter @elkinareasports.