Shay Straughn, Lauren Flannery Captain 42nd All-Valley Girls’ Basketball Team
Senior, John Marshall
“She is the best player I have ever coached.” That sums up what John Marshall coach Brock Melko thinks of this year’s Big School captain Shay Straughn. The senior amassed 1,455 career points at JM in three seasons after transferring from Bishop Donahue. Straughn wrapped up an outstanding high school career with 24.2 points, 4.8 rebounds, 5.1 steals and 2.5 assists a game in her final campaign. The Monarchs’ top scorer drained 67 3-pointers with a 73 percent mark from the free-throw line and was 42 percent from the field to secure first team all-state honors. Straughn’s 22 points in the regional final against University came while playing on a severely sprained ankle. It’s that talent and determination that finds her on the All-Valley team for the third consecutive season.
It was a season to remember for Makayla Abram and she is looking to put together two more just like it. Abram was a breakout star for Jeff Lombardo’s Big Red squad. Her tenacity and hard-nosed play made a fan favorite with the Steubenville faithful. In her sophomore campaign, Abram earned third team all-state and first team All-OVAC as she garnered 16.4 points a game, while averaging eight rebounds and two steals.
Hope Bowman made double-doubles a nightly routine at Brooke this season. The senior center averaged 17.7 points, 11.4 rebounds and 6.2 blocks this year for the Bruins and finished her outstanding career with 1,102 points. This is Bowman’s third consecutive appearance on the All-Valley team. She kicked off her senior campaign in thrilling fashion with 24 points and 20 rebounds in a 45-32 victory over Oak Glen.
Buckeye Local coach Tom Figurski watched history unfold before his eyes this year. Senior Emily Holzopfel became the eighth girl in OVAC history to reach 2,000 career points.
She also nearly averaged a double-double with 26.4 points and 9.3 rebounds a game. Holzopfel added 3.4 steals and 2.6 assists a game.
“Emily is a leader both on and off the court,” Figurski said. “She is always leading through example for the younger players. I cannot wait to see her play at the next level.”
The future is bright at Indian Creek. With a trio of talented sophomores ready to roll, 5-foot-9 guard Kylie Kiger leads the group.
Her 12.3 points, 4.1 rebounds, 3.2 steals and 2.1 assists a game helped her collect first team All-District 5, first team All-OVAC and second team All-Eastern District honors this season. She also accounted for 65 deflections.
“Kylie does a little bit of everything for us,” Indian Creek coach Steven Eft said. “She really stepped up and emerged as one of our leaders by the end of the season. She works really hard on her game and puts a lot of time in.
“The future is bright for Kylie and we are counting on her to be one of our leaders going forward.”
Double-double machine Jenna Riccardo could not be contained this year. The junior out of Beaver Local recorded 19 double-doubles, averaging 23 points and 14 boards a game to earn third team All-Ohio accolades. She also reached the 1,000-point plateau and became the school’s all-time leading scorer with 1,261 points. She was named MVP in leading the Beavers to a OVAC Class 4A title.
Sydney Starr was exactly that this season. A star. The 5-foot-10 forward averaged a double-double of 13 points and 11 rebounds a game. Her 10 double-doubles were highlighted by a 21-rebound performance in one game. The senior recorded 13 double digit rebound games and added two steals a contest for the Huskies.
Shanley Woods made a comfortable living behind the 3-point line this year. The junior shot 46 percent from beyond the arc and drained 88 3-pointers in helping Wheeling Park reach the state tournament for a third straight season. Also fearless driving to the basket, Woods averaged 17.8 points a game and knocked down 90 percent of her free throws on her way to being named second team all-state and first team All-OVAC.
Lauren Flannery has made her home on the All-Valley first team. It’s her third straight appearance on the squad after a stellar senior campaign. The River point guard earned first team All-Ohio honors and collected District 12 Player of the Year accolades with her outstanding play. She can now add All-Valley Captain to that list. She garnered 23 points, 4.5 assists, four rebounds and four steals a game in leading the Pilots to their second consecutive OVAC 2A title. Flannery finished her prep career with 1,724 points and was a candidate for Ohio’s Ms. Basketball Award. She was also selected to the Ohio North/South All-Star Game, the District All-Star Game, the BACF All-Star Game and the OVAC All-Star Game, where she led the Ohio squad with 14 points.
Katrina Davis, Bellaire
In her junior season, Katrina Davis supplied team-highs of 16.3 points and 7.6 rebounds a game on her way to an All-Valley selection. She also dished out 4.8 assists and collected 3.8 steals a game this year to lead the Big Reds to an OVAC 3A championship. Davis also garnered third team All-Ohio honors and first team All-Eastern District accolades.
“Katrina is a constant competitor,” Bellaire coach John Farrier said. “She competes in every drill, every practice and every game.”
Another successful season and another trip to the state tournament has landed Eden Gainer back on the All-Valley squad for a third straight season. The Wheeling Central junior eclipsed 1,000 points this year, while averaging 21.2 points, 5.1 rebounds, 3.9 assists and 3.9 steals a game. Her achievements also earned her first team all-state honors and All-OVAC for Coach Penn Kurtz’s Maroon Knights.
Kaylin Nixon, St. John
What couldn’t Kaylin Nixon do on the basketball court? She averaged a double-double this year with 20.7 points and 11.8 rebounds a game, giving her 1,184 career points and 614 career boards, which rank sixth and fourth, respectively in school history. This is Nixon’s second straight appearance on the All-Valley squad. Her 2.4 blocks a game adds up to 77 over the last four years and ranks fourth in school history. Nixon bucketed a career-high 43 points against Shenandoah, drained 25 3-pointers and shot 72 percent from the free-throw line in her final campaign. Nixon was a two-time All-Ohioan, two-time All-OVAC first teamer and was named first team all-district twice.
Kyndra Pilant, Magnolia
To score 1,000 points and collect 1,000 rebounds in a career is an amazing accomplishment. Kyndra Pilant did it in her first three years. A two-year captain, the junior from Magnolia accomplished the feat, while averaging 17.5 points, 17.3 rebounds, 4.8 assists, 3.2 blocks and 2.1 steals per game. Her 19 double-doubles helped lead the Blue Eagles to their second straight state tournament. She was named second team all-state and first team All-OVAC.
Kaylee Reinbeau owned the paint this year. On her way to second team all-state and first team All-OVAC honors, the Central junior averaged a double-double with 16.8 points and 10.2 rebounds a game. She also garnered 2.8 assists and 3.4 steals in helping to lift the Maroon Knights to a state tournament run. It’s the second straight year Reinbeau has been selected first team All-Valley and All-OVAC.
Baylee Wach, Shadyside
A trip to the state tournament made this season one to remember for the Shadyside Tigers. Sophomore guard Baylee Wach certainly left her mark throughout the memorable journey. Wach turned in 18 points, three steals and two assists a game for Coach Serge Gentile’s squad. Wach drained 75 3-pointers this season, including five in the state semifinals — a state tournament record in Division IV. She also earned third team All-Ohio, first team All-District 12 and first team All-Eastern District in Division IV.
It’s hard to believe the remarkable career of Mady Winters is only halfway through. In only her sophomore campaign, Winters has already reached the 1,000 point plateau. In her second consecutive state tournament appearance, Winters set a school record with 45 points in a single game, breaking the mark previously held by former Blue Eagles standout Mallory Chapman. That landed her on the all-tournament team. She averaged 23.1 points, 13.1 rebounds and 2.1 blocks a game this year, earning her second team all-state accolades, as well as first team All-OVAC.
Makayla Abram, Steubenville
Hope Bowman, Brooke
Emily Holzopfel, Buckeye Local
Kylie Kiger, Indian Creek
Jenna Riccardo, Beaver Local
Sydney Starr, Harrison Central
Shay Straughn, John Marshall (captain)
Shanley Woods, Wheeling Park
Bella Abbernathy, Wheeling Park
Abby Blake, John Marshall
Madison Cline, Beaver Local
Alaire Destifanes, Buckeye Local
Maggie Kovalcik, Oak Glen
Mackenzie Orban, Indian Creek
Emily Pavlic, Wheeling Park
Katie Strama, St. Clairsville
Alexa Andrews, Oak Glen
Madison Ging, Martins Ferry
Kieran Johnson, Wheeling Park
Casey Kildow, Union Local
Lexee McAfee, Harrison Central
Sophia Mikula, Weir
Rileigh Simpson, St. Clairsville
Richella Spielvogel, Martins Ferry
Brooke: Chloe Fox, Chrissy Byers
Buckeye Local: Morgan Donley
Edison: Lauren Ferralli
Harrison Central: Marina Miller, Jara Madzia
Indian Creek: Taylor Scott, Kacie Vandeborne
John Marshall: Kaitlyn Groves, Anna Blake
Martins Ferry: Sidne Sidon, Jaden Stalder
Oak Glen: Reece Enochs, Kaylee Travis
St. Clairsville: Keri Klinkoski
Steubenville: Madison Fields
Union Local: Hannah Porter, Allison Loase
Weir: Isabella Aperfine, Gia Fuscardo
Wheeling Park: Abby Snedecker
Katrina Davis, Bellaire
Lauren Flannery, River (captain)
Eden Gainer, Wheeling Central
Kaylin Nixon, St. John
Kyndra Pilant, Magnolia
Kaylee Reinbeau, Wheeling Central
Baylee Wach, Shadyside
Mady Winters, Magnolia
Andrea Alimario, Madonna
Maci Crozier, Bellaire
Tory Hendershot, Shadyside
Josey Jones, Tyler Consolidated
Ashlie Louden, Beallsville
Hannah Loy, Paden City
Natalie Stoner, Bellaire
Julia Zatta, Steubenville Catholic
Charlie Allison, Linsly
Rachel Boniti, Madonna
Sydnie Destifanes, Shadyside
Christine Dombrowski, Steubenville Catholic
Kalista Friday, Monroe Central
Ashley Howell, Beallsville
Jordyn Hughes, Cameron
Carsyn Reynolds, River
Barnesville: Annie Carpenter, Paige Morgan
Beallsville: Olivia Muncy
Bellaire: Michaela Flaherty
Bridgeport: Angela Sommer, Jaren Tucker
Cameron: Lili Neely, Madge Lucey
Hundred: Katherine Henderson
Linsly: Josie Purpura, Carleigh Grimm
Madonna: Kennedy Martin
Magnolia: Aquera Cabral
Monroe Central: Amy Bettinger, Sydney Yoho
Paden City: Abbe Stackpole
River: Candace Caldwell, Riley Lollathin
Shadyside: Jaycee Mayeres
St. John: Jayden Lowe
Steubenville Catholic: Bella Oliver
Toronto: Jo’Zaeyah Jordan
Tyler Consolidated: JoLee Walton, Peyton Kocher
Valley: Caitlyn Underwood, Jenna Dallison
Wheeling Central: Marissa Horan, Hannah White