It was a historic girls’ basketball season in Queens this winter.
The Mary Louis Academy led the way, clinching a BQCHSAA and state title before coming up just short in the Federation championship game. Christ the King also impressed, notching a BQCHSAA championship berth. St. Francis Prep and Archbishop Molloy turned in solid performances as well.
Monsignor McClancy got back to the top of the championship mountain this season, clinching a BQCHSAA title in the “A” division. On the PSAL side, Springfield Gardens stole the show, competing in the “B” city final for the first time in school history.
Of course, none of that success would have been possible without the players and Queens boasted some of the best talent on the hardwood this year. Read on to find out who led the charge:
Player of the Year: Danielle Patterson, Senior, The Mary Louis Academy
Coach of the Year: JoAnn Arbitello-Pinnock, The Mary Louis Academy
The Hilltoppers coach led her team to the top this season, guiding the squad to a BQCHSAA and city championship. TMLA also notched a convincing victory in the Federation “AA” semis before falling to South Shore in the state final March 25. Arbitello-Pinnock and the Hilltoppers won’t be down for long, however, returning a good chunk of its backcourt next season.
Jordan Nixon, Junior, The Mary Louis Academy
It didn’t take long for the first-year Hilltopper to settle into a rhythm with her team. Nixon was an offensive general for TMLA, averaging 18 points, eight rebounds and seven assists per game. Her performance led to offers from some of the top colleges in the country, including Tennessee, Notre Dame, Florida State and St. John’s.
Emily Engstler, Junior, St. Francis Prep
After being forced to sit out last season due to CHSAA transfer rules, Engstler made up for lost time this season. The Terriers’ forward was nothing short of dominant in the paint, racking up 19 points and 15.7 rebounds per game. She also chipped in 3.4 assists and 3.4 steals for good measure.
Kaelynn Satterfield, Sophomore, Christ the King
The guard/forward stepped into the Royals young starting lineup this season and hardly missed a beat. Satterfield’s attack on the basket left defenders desperate to find a way to slow her down as she averaged 17.3 points and 6.2 rebounds per game this season.
Brandy Thomas, Junior, Christ the King
The guard racked up the minutes for the Royals this season and she made good use of her time on the court, averaging 11.4 points and 7.3 rebounds per game. Thomas also served as the leader for Christ the King this season, sparking the team’s run towards the BQCHSAA final.
Jenna Mastellone, Senior, Archbishop Molloy
The longtime Stanners standout wrapped up her high school career on a statistical high note this season. Mastellone averaged 14 points per game and was the team’s leader on and off the court. She was also named MVP of The Mecca Basketball Challenge.
Emily Betances Nunez, Senior, Thomas Edison
The guard was a scoring force to be reckoned with this year, averaging a whopping 29.42 points per season – leading Queens A East during the regular season. Nunez also hauled in 5.7 rebounds per game, wrapping up her final season on the hardwood with a jampacked stat line.
Nykiesha Paul, Senior, Far Rockaway
A multi-sport star at Far Rockaway, Paul was a basketball star this winter. She averaged 28.8 points, 6.3 rebounds and 3.6 rebounds during the regular season and didn’t skip a beat in the postseason. Paul racked up an average of 30 points in two playoff games as well as five rebounds and 3.5 assists.
Vanerlie Valcourt, Junior, The Mary Louis Academy
She didn’t boast the most size, but Valcourt made up for it with some serious heart this season. She averaged 12 points and two assists per and her ability to crash the boards was nothing short of dominant. Valcourt hauled in 10 rebounds per game, often giving TMLA second and third looks at the hoop.
Natalija Marshall, Freshman, Christ the King
Marshall might have been young, transferring into Christ the King this season, but she didn’t play that way and the forward got better every time she stepped onto the court. A scoring threat from just about any spot on the floor, Marshall averaged double-digits throughout the season.
Kaitlyn Stenz, Senior, Monsignor McClancy
The senior leader of the Lady Crusaders, Stenz sparked the squad en route to a BQCHSAA championship this season. The forward, who also played in the Mayor’s Cup, 9.5 points, 7.4 rebounds and assists per game. She also recorded six double-doubles.
Kania Pollock, Junior, The Mary Louis Academy
A first-year Hilltopper, Pollock found a place for herself in the starting lineup with TMLA this season. The shooting guard frequently lived up to her positional job, draining clutch buckets, including a big-time three-pointer in the CHSAA state championship game.
Maia Cabrera, Senior, Forest Hills
The multi-sport standout, who will play soccer for St. John’s next fall, was just as dominant on the court as she was on the field this season. Cabrera averaged 24.6 points, 7.7 rebounds and two assists per game, the leader of her squad on both sides of the ball.
Dorothy Matinale, Senior, St. Francis Prep
The Mayor’s Cup participant was a much-needed source of experience on a young Terriers squad this year. Matinale helped keep the team level throughout the year and was a big part of the team’s upset victory over Archbishop Molloy in the postseason.
Rhona McCaughey, Junior, Monsignor McClancy
The guard, who also served as team captain this season, averaged 8.5 points, 4.5 rebounds, 2.3 assists and 2.6 steals per game. McCaughey did a bit of everything for the team this season, helping the Lady Crusaders push tempo on both sides of the ball.
MacKenzie Cummings, Sophomore, Springfield Gardens
The Lady Golden Eagles’ point guard was the driving force behind the team’s success this season. She averaged 14.4 points and two assists during the regular season, but she was even better in the playoffs. In four postseason matchups, Cummings averaged 16.5 points per game.
Sabrina Clement, Senior, Francis Lewis
Sabrina Vitale, Senior, Francis Lewis
Klarke Sconiers, Sophomore, Christ the King
Kristina Krslovic, Junior, Monsignor McClancy
Kim Soriano, Senior, Monsignor McClancy
Melanie Polanca, Senior, St. Agnes
Zaria Witherspoon, Senior, Hillcrest
Aalyiah Smith, Junior, Flushing Campus
Camryn McDonald, Senior, Grover Cleveland
Makelia Johnosn, Senior, Baccalaureate School For Global Education
Ashley Barrett, Junior, Cambria Heights
Bryanna Deluca, Senior, Maspeth
©2017 Community News Group
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