Brent Price, Joey Ewusiak, Taylor Straughn Named All-Staters
Jeter, Routt named to 2nd team; Burkhalter is captain of 3rd team
CLARKSBURG — One of the many things Jarrod West has brought to the table as a high school basketball player is his desire to make everybody on the court with him better.
That’s the type of outlook fitting of a leader. West, a senior for state champion Notre Dame who will continue his basketball career at Marshall University, has been selected as the first-team captain fo the Class A first-team All-State by the West Virginia Sports Writers Association.
“It’s pretty important,” said West, who earned first-team all-state honors for the third consecutive year. It’s definitely something that is on my goal paper in my room that I wrote down when I was in eighth grade. We’ve had a lot of great players come through Class A the last couple of years so it’s tough to compete for that first-team captain spot when you have a lot of great players who have similar numbers.
“First team captain in single A means something. It means you have been recognized for your leadership and the hard work you have put in throughout your career.”
West’s numbers aren’t too shabby either. He entered the state tournament averaging 20.5 points per game along with six rebounds, six assists and six steals per contest.
Those statistics hardly suffered at the state tournament where during a three-game stretch that ended with his school’s first-ever Class A state championship, averaging 26.7 points, 6.2 rebounds, 6.3 assists and two steals.
He’s also a lock-down defender, a sometimes overlooked aspect of his skill set because of how dynamic he can be at the other end of the floor.
“That’s something that has been pounded into my head since I started playing by my Dad (Notre Dame head coach Jarrod West),” West said. “At my height, you have to be a bulldog. At 5-foot-10 you can’t afford not to be a good defensive player, especially if you have goals of playing in college at the Division 1 level.”
Oddly enough, the other seven players to receive first-team honors were from teams that Notre Dame played in the 2016-17 season including three West had to go up against in Charleston last weekend in Gilmer County’s Trey Shuff, Wheeling Central’s Brent Price and Ravenswood’s Riley Heatherington.
Shuff averaged a double-double for the Titans at 20.2 points and 12 rebounds per game. Price, one of two juniors on the first team (the other six are seniors) led the Maroon Knights in scoring at 17.7 points per game. Heatherington was the top player for the Red Devils, who faced West and the Fighting Irish in the title game, averaging 19.9 points per game as well as 9.5 rebounds and 4.7 assists.
Bishop Donahue’s Taylor Straughn is also a three-time first-team selection. He finished his senior season with a 25.5 points per game average along with 5.0 rebounds and 2.0 assists.
Madonna’s Joey Ewusiak averaged 21 points and eight rebounds per contest, leading the Blue Dons to state tournament semifinals.
Deaundra Murphy from St. Joseph averaged 27.6 points per game along with 9.0 rebounds and 3 steals en route to earning first-team honors. The first-team squad is rounded out by junior Tyler May of Tug Valley. May averaged 19 points, five rebounds and five assists per game.
The second-team captain is Ravenswood’s Isaiah Morgan. He’s joined by Van’s Taylor Jarrell, Fayeteville’s Will Fenton, East Hardy’s Brett Tharp, St. Marys’ Sam Kincaid, Cameron’s Trey Routt, Madonna’s Tavon Jeter and Tucker County’s Ethan Crosten.
Captain of the third team is Wheeling Central’s John Burkhalter. Other third-team selections are Clay-Battelle’s Tanner Burnette, Valley-Fayette’s Spencer Dean, Notre Dame’s Gabe Zummo, Fayetteville’s Marcus Lively, Charleston Catholic’s Robby Williams, Parkersburg Catholic’s Logan Plummer and St. Joseph’s John Morrison.