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Trib 10 basketball: 2,000-point scorers lead all-star selections

April 11, 2018

This was a big year for big scorers.

There are four seniors among the Trib 10 all-stars who reached the 2,000-point mark this season, a number that remains a lofty milestone for most WPIAL basketball players. Combined, Mars’ Robby Carmody, East Allegheny’s Amani Johnson, Leechburg’s Mikayla Lovelace and Chartiers-Houston’s Alexa Williamson scored 8,995 points.

Three Trib 10 picks averaged more than 30 points per game this season: Carmody, Williamson and Laurel Highlands’ Bryce Laskey. They accounted for plenty of 40-point games including a remarkable 51-point effort by Williamson in a WPIAL playoff win.

But they also found team success.

All 20 honorees reached the postseason and 15 played in a championship game, either district or state. Six celebrated WPIAL titles and two — Mars teammates Lauren Wasylson and Tai Johnson ­— celebrated in Hershey.

Here are the Trib 10 selections for the 2017-18 basketball season.

Trib 10 boys

Amante Britt

Woodland Hills

5-11, senior, guard

Britt led Woodland Hills’ basketball resurgence. The point guard averaged 20 points, guided the Wolverines (20-5) to the WPIAL Class 6A semifinals and became the team’s all-time leading scorer. He’ll graduate with 1,425 career points and more than 400 assists.

Robby Carmody

Mars

6-5, senior, guard

The Notre Dame recruit averaged 31.1 points, 14.1 rebounds, 4.3 steals and 1.6 blocks for Mars (25-5), which won the WPIAL Class 5A title and was the state runner-up. The Planets won 91 games in his four years and reached Hershey twice. Carmody, who was named the state’s Gatorade Player of the Year, will graduate with 2,390 career points and 1,126 rebounds.

James Ellis

Westinghouse

6-11, senior, center

Nobody stood taller in the Pittsburgh City League than Ellis, a dominant big man who posted double-doubles with consistency. He averaged 21 points, 12 rebounds and 7.6 blocks for the Bulldogs (18-7), who reached the PIAA Class 3A second round. Ellis signed with Allegany College, a junior college in Maryland. He graduates with 1,014 career points.

Keeno Holmes

Lincoln Park

6-2, junior, guard

Holmes averaged 23.5 points, six rebounds, three steals and four assists for the Leopards (20-7), who won the WPIAL Class 3A title. The shooting guard scored 34 points twice in the postseason as Lincoln Park reached the PIAA second round. In the regular season, Holmes helped sustain a section winning streak that stands at 76.

Phil Jurkovec

Pine-Richland

6-5, senior, guard/forward

The Notre Dame quarterback recruit graduates as the second-leading scorer in Pine-Richland history with 1,656 career points. He averaged 16.1 points, 9.3 rebounds and 5.7 assists this season for the Rams (23-7), who finished as the WPIAL Class 6A runners-up and took the eventual PIAA champion to overtime in a state semifinal.

Bryce Laskey

Laurel Highlands

6-4, senior, guard

The St. Francis (Pa.) recruit averaged 33.3 points, second-best among all WPIAL regular-season scorers, and led Laurel Highlands (14-9) to the WPIAL Class 5A playoffs. Laskey scored at least 30 points in 16 of his team’s 23 games. He surpassed 40 points four times including a season-high 47 in a victory over Latrobe.

Ethan Morton

Butler

6-5, sophomore, guard

Pitt’s Jeff Capel was the latest Division 1 coach to offer a scholarship to Morton, who averaged 26 points, nine rebounds and seven assists this season. The point guard led Butler (18-5) to the WPIAL Class 6A playoffs. Penn State, West Virginia, Duquesne, Ohio State, Iowa, Purdue and Wisconsin are among his offers.

Daivon Stephens

Penn Hills

6-6, senior, guard/forward

Stephens provided an all-around impact for WPIAL Class 6A champion Penn Hills (24-4). The versatile forward averaged 17.9 points, 8.6 rebounds, 2.5 steals and 1.3 blocks for the Indians, who won their first title since 2003. Stephens had a double-double in the WPIAL finals with 23 points and 11 rebounds.

Isiah Warfield

Sewickley Academy

6-4, sophomore, guard

Warfield, who lists a Duquesne offer, was one of three standout sophomores who led Sewickley (24-5) to the WPIAL Class 2A title. Warfield averaged 15.8 points and 7.1 rebounds, both team-bests, and added 3.9 assists. He posted 10 double-doubles including 27 points and 11 rebounds in the WPIAL final.

Coletrane Washington

Quaker Valley

6-5, senior, guard

Washington graduates with 1,551 career points, which ranks third all-time in Quaker Valley history. The Drexel recruit averaged 21.5 points, 6.5 rebounds and 5.3 assists for the Quakers (26-2), who were the WPIAL Class 4A runners-up and reached the PIAA semifinals.

Trib 10 girls

Laryn Edwards

Hampton

5-8, senior, guard

The Loyola (Md.) recruit averaged 21.9 points, 5.2 rebounds, five assists and 3.2 steals for Hampton, which reached the WPIAL Class 5A quarterfinals. The Talbots (19-5) shared the section title with state champion Mars. Edwards was a 42-percent shooter from 3-point range.

Amani Johnson

East Allegheny

5-6, senior, guard

Johnson joined the 2,000-point club and climbed up among the Top 20 all-time scorers in WPIAL history. The Kennesaw State recruit averaged 26 points this season and will graduate with 2,345. She led East Allegheny (27-2) deep into the playoffs, finishing at WPIAL Class 3A runner-up and reached the PIAA semifinals.

Tai Johnson

Mars

5-7, junior, guard

Johnson’s season will be remembered for her steal, layup and foul shot with 4 seconds left to win the state Class 5A title. But the Bucknell recruit was strong all season. She averaged 18.1 points and five rebounds, and also contributed a 35-point effort in the PIAA second round.

Mikayla Lovelace

Leechburg

5-10, senior, guard/forward

Lovelace was one of three new additions to the WPIAL girls list of 2,000-point scorers. The IUP recruit averaged 23.8 points, 10.2 rebounds, four assists and 3.2 steals this season and led Leechburg (19-6) to the WPIAL Class 2A quarterfinals and a state playoff berth. Lovelace will graduate with 2,047 points.

Makenna Marisa

Peters Township

5-11, junior, guard

The heavily recruited junior averaged 23.2 points and led Peters Township (21-5) to a WPIAL Class 6A runner-up finish. She also averaged nearly 10 rebounds. She’s received D1 scholarship offers from Pitt, Duquesne, Cincinnati, St. Joseph’s and Villanova, among others.

Rachel Martindale

North Allegheny

5-9, junior, guard

Martindale averaged a team-best 14 points, 4.7 rebounds and 2.3 assists for WPIAL Class 6A champion North Allegheny (28-1), which was undefeated with the star point guard in the lineup. The 1,000-point scorer tore an ACL in the WPIAL final.

Bella Posset

Beaver

5-8, senior, guard

The Robert Morris recruit averaged 19.7 points, 4.8 rebounds, 3.8 assists and 4.8 steals for the Bobcats (19-7), who were the WPIAL Class 4A runners-up. Posset, who led her team to Petersen Events Center, scored 29 points in the finals. She’ll graduate with 1,601 points.

Gia Thorpe

Winchester Thurston

5-8, senior, guard

Thorpe and teammate Ayanna Townsend formed a title-winning tandem for the second year in a row in WPIAL Class A. Thorpe filled the stat sheet by averaging 20.9 points, 7.9 rebounds, 5.5 assists, 5.1 steals and 1.2 blocks for a team that finished 20-6. She posted a triple-double in the finals with 36 points, 13 rebounds and 10 steals.

Lauren Wasylson

Mars

5-10, senior, guard/forward

The Xavier recruit averaged 16.9 points and seven rebounds for Mars (24-6), the state Class 5A champion. The 1,000-point scorer combined with junior Tai Johnson to lead the resurgent Planets to Hershey after a loss in the WPIAL semifinals.

Alexa Williamson

Chartiers-Houston

6-1, senior, center

Williamson also joined the WPIAL’s 2,000-point club. The Temple recruit averaged 30.7 points and 14 rebounds for Charters-Houston (21-7), the WPIAL Class 2A runner-up. The Bucs won the title her junior year. She’ll graduate with 2,213 career points.

Chris Harlan is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at charlan@tribweb.com or via Twitter @CHarlan_Trib.