East girls to have PSJ vibe

With the 14th edition of the annual All-Star Basketball Classic less than two weeks away, the final boys and girls for the East All-Stars have been selected.

The event matches the top seniors from The News Herald’s eight-county readership area comprising the East boys and girls teams against the best seniors from The Daily News in Fort Walton Beach’s Okaloosa, Santa Rosa and Walton county area. The East teams are chosen by The News Herald with assistance of the East All-Star coaches – Bozeman coach Michael Memmen for the boys, and Bozeman coach Desmond Brown for the girls.

The first four boys – Rutherford’s Lorenzo Ferrell, Blountstown’s KK Godwin, Mosley’s Stacy Burse, and Bethlehem’s Kobe Hendrix – and first four girls – Mosley’s Ja’Tayvia Holley, Port St. Joe’s Teiyahna Hutchinson, Holmes County’s Laura Jones, and North Bay Haven’s Josselin Geer – were revealed last week.

Rounding out the East boys roster is Eddie Dubose of Rutherford, Antonio Bellamy of Mosley, Matthew Isenhoff of Vernon, Werlean Pollock of Marianna, Jacobi Jones of Wewahitchka, Amari Banks of Cottondale, Noah Gustason of Bozeman, and Jamal Howard of Blountstown.

For the girls, the final eight selections go to Brooklynn Quinn and ShaMario Cole of Port St. Joe, Shelby Suggs and Carly Hanson of Bozeman, Devyn Butorac and Taylor West of Ponce de Leon, Kori Jones of Marianna, and Robin Tate of Poplar Springs.

Dubose, a 6-foot-5 forward, averaged 10 points and 7.5 rebounds per game for the Rams this season, while the 6-1 Bellamy was the second-leading scorer for the Dolphins at 13.8 points per game and led them with 6.3 rebounds per contest. He also shot 52 percent from the field and 70 percent from the free throw line. Isenhoff, a 6-foot guard, was the top scorer for Vernon at 21.8 points per game while adding 4.6 rebounds, 2.3 assists, and 2.6 steals per game.

A super-athletic 6-2 guard, Pollock averaged 12 points, six rebounds, and 3.5 assists per game for the Bulldogs this season. A 5-9 guard, Banks was the top performer for the Hornets at 19 points per game to go with four assists, five rebounds, and a steal per game. Gustason, a 6-3 forward, led Bozeman with 11.6 points and 8.5 rebounds per contest to go with an assist and 1.7 steals per game. A 6-2, 200-pound forward, Howard brought interior toughness to an undersized Blountstown team and finished his senior season averaging eight points, 6.2 rebounds, and 1.5 steals per game. Stats for Jacobi Jones were not made available.

Kori Jones, a 5-7 guard, averaged 12 points, seven rebounds, and two steals per game for the Bulldogs this season, while the 5-9 Tate averaged 13.2 points per game for the Atomics. Quinn, a versatile 5-11 guard-forward, finished the season with averages of 9.2 points, 6.4 rebounds, 4.7 assists, and 3.6 steals, while the 5-5 Cole put in 7.4 points, two rebounds, and 2.7 steals per contest.

Suggs, a 5-7 guard, led the Bucks in scoring with 16.8 points per game and added 5.9 rebounds per game as well, while the 5-10 forward Hanson averaged a double-double this season at 14.2 points and 10.4 rebounds per contest. Butorac, a 5-6 guard, averaged 11.2 points, 4.5 rebounds, an assist, and 2.1 steals per game for the Pirates, while 5-4 teammate West put in 10.4 points, 3.7 assists, and 3.1 steals per game this season.

Rutherford senior guard Kara Spani, who averaged 16 points per game for the Rams, was originally slated to be on the East girls team before suffering a knee injury in her last game of the season.

The All-Star Basketball Classic will take place April 7 at the Billy Harrison Field House at Gulf Coast State College. The girls’ game will tip off at 11 a.m. CT, followed by the boys’ game at 1 p.m. CT. Admission to the games will be $6 for adults, $2 for children, and kids 4 and under will get in free. Passes will be accepted for high school and college coaches.

Bozeman coaches Michael Memmen and Desmond Brown have been chosen to helm the All-Star East teams, with Rutherford coach Rhondie Ross helping Memmen coach the boys, and North Bay Haven coach Ty Steele assisting Brown with the girls.