Players listed alphabetically by school:
Jessie Winans, so., 5-3, Afton
One of the top scorers in the area at 15.3 points per game, Winans completed her fourth varsity season, and it was clearly her best in leading the Crimson Knights in scoring, assists (4.1/game), and steals (3.8/game). Most impressive was her low assist-to-turnover ratio. “And she handled the ball for us about 90 percent of the time,” said head coach John Simonds. She put 337 points on the board this season raising her career total to 902. She’ll likely move over the 1,000-point mark early in her junior season, a not-so-shabby total for someone not playing her number one sport. “She’s a softball player who plays basketball,” Simonds said. “As the season goes on, she gets better and better, and her shooting improved as the season went on.” She reached double figures scoring 19 times reaching a high of 31 against Harpursville. The biggest compliment Simonds paid his point guard was her worth to the team. “She had some off shooting nights, but she would always find her teammates,” he said.
Dani Conway, jr., 5-11, B-G
Led the Bobcats in multiple statistics including scoring, rebounding (10.8/gm.), assists (111), and steals (62), and went over 1,000 career points in her third full varsity season. “She is truly a team player who tried to distribute the ball,” said B-G coach Bob Conway. Added Greene coach Bill Case: “She’s not only a good rebounder and great scorer, she is a terrific ballhandler. She’s as versatile as they come, and I really felt she matured this year as a player.” Conway was part of a one-two scoring punch, along with teammate Mariah Schaeffer, that combined to average around 35 points per game. Conway manned the point guard position most of the time, and controlled the tempo of the game, coach Conway said. An adept free throw shooter, Conway hit 76.8 percent of her attempts, and she was in double figures scoring every game this season in earning her third straight all-star honor.
Mariah Schaeffer, sr., 5-5, Bainbridge-Guilford
Along with her other prolific scoring half, Dani Conway, Schaeffer was required to carry a significant amount of the scoring load. Despite gimmick defenses designed to slow her and Conway, she finished off a 1,000-point scoring career with a four-year best, 17.5 per game scoring average. “I felt she was the most explosive offensive player in our league,” said Greene coach Bill Case. “She could catch and shoot, take it to the basket, or drive and pull up to shoot the jumper. You had to keep an eye on her all the time.” Coach Bob Conway watched her develop over four years, and Schaeffer’s mentality as a confident offensive player never wavered over those seasons. “She always had that mentality as a kid who wanted to shoot, and she was capable of scoring at almost any time,” he said. Schaeffer finished with 1,087 career points, and she added four assists, 4.9 rebounds, and nearly two steals a game this past season.
Ashlea Osborne, sr., 5-8, Gilbertsville-Mt. Upton
On a team comprised of “role” players, as head coach Jim Johnson described his corps of ladies, Osborne’s role was that of shooter and outside scorer. Osborne came on strong the second half of the season averaging just under 10 points per game on the year, while earning second team All-Tri-Valley League accolades. “She’s always been a good shooter, and I think she actually had more three-pointers than two-point baskets this season,” Johnson. “She handled the ball for us, rebounded well, and as our team got better toward the end of the season, that gave Ashlea better opportunities to shoot the ball.” Osborne hit around 40 percent of her three-point attempts hitting five trifectas in a contest on two occasions and 31 for the season. She had a career-high 18 against Edmeston, and averaged nearly 12 points per game over the second half of the season.
Barb Borst, jr., 5-5, Greene
The Trojans’ second leading scorer at 12 points per game, she was perhaps the most valuable offensive player, nonetheless. “At the Norwich tournament (a finals loss to Oxford), it showed she was player that dictated Greene’s offense,” said B-G coach Bob Conway. “She fouled out of that game, and she understood she could not get herself in that situation again.” Borst was an effective outside shooter hitting 31 treys at a 43 percent rate, and she was an adept rebounder averaging 5.6 per game plus 1.6 steals a contest. “Barb learned a lot from the Oxford game, and having her on the floor made a big difference for us,” said Greene coach Bill Case. “She worked out in the offseason, and she really improved her strength and ballhandling. She played with much more confidence this season.” Added UV head coach Brandi Backus: “With the inside players Greene had this year, (Borst’s) outside shooting made them a tough team to defend.”
Megan McDermott, jr., 5-10, Greene
The Trojans’ leading scorer at 12.1 points a game, McDermott proved a perfect example of effort equals results. “She’s a high energy kid. She’ll get on the floor and do all the dirty work for her team,” said B-G coach Bob Conway. “Sometimes her shots will not look pretty, but they go in, and sometimes you’ll ask why she took a shot. But you never get upset with a kid like that because of her effort, and she’ll work hard to get the ball back.” McDermott was easily the Trojans’ top rebounder at 9.2 per game, while contributing multiple double-doubles in points and boards. “She is just a great overall rebounder, and has more desire and hustle than most anybody her size,” said Greene coach Bill Case. “She is relentless and spirited, and toward the end of the season, moved into a leadership role on the team.”
Amber Wood, sr., 5-5, Otselic Valley
Wood proved a pleasant surprise for the Vikings and head coach Kevin Springer. Coming off a junior season in which she scored 8.1 points, Wood raised that number to 14.7 a game to finish among the top five in Chenango County. “I was pleased she did step up the season, and she was certainly a leader for us throughout the season,” Springer said. Wood gave evidence of her scoring prowess the third game of the season when she scored a school-record 42 points in an overtime win over Cincinnatus. She finished in double figures 16 of 20 games, and had two other 22-point games on her season ledger. “To have that much of a jump in scoring, it is certainly a compliment to her hard work,” Springer said of Wood.
Megan Record, jr., 5-7, Sherburne-Earlville
Record went from key reserve to key offensive weapon in one season more than doubling her scoring average from a year ago to lead the 17-5 Marauders with 11.3 points per game, in addition to seven rebounds a contest. “Her offense came a long way from last year,” said S-E coach Jeff Barry. “She improved her shot selection, and had the ability to score inside and outside. She could score in the post or shoot the three.” Record was an all-tournament selection at the UV tournament in which she was a perfect 13-for-13 from the foul line. She led S-E’s starters in foul shooting and hit 23 three-pointers. “Everyone talks about Kurtz and Green (Danielle), but (Record) really put a hurting on us in the two games we played them,” said Unadilla Valley coach Brandi Backus. “We lost two close games to them, and she made all of her foul shots against us.”
Courtney Kurtz, sr., 5-8, Sherburne-Earlville
Kurtz’s four years on Sherburne-Earville, not surprisingly, coincided with the program’s ascendancy in which the Marauders appeared in a B-2 section title game, while also setting team records for wins her junior and senior seasons. “She’s a terrific player,” summed up S-E coach Jeff Barry. “Her scoring was down this year, but we had other kids who could also get it done on the offensive end. We couldn’t replace her on the defensive end.” A two-time area all-star, she was second on S-E in scoring, but led in steals, rebounds, and blocked shots. “When she had it going, she was just a beat on there,” Barry said. Kurtz was in double figures 14 times this past season scoring 17 in a one-point win at Waterville.
Hannah Johnson, jr., 5-8, Unadilla Valley
The second-year varsity player for the Storm was kind of the glue that held together her team. She was an active rebounder with multiple double figures rebounding games, led her team in scoring, and was an adept ballhandler who was often used to break pressure defenses. “She was tough on the bounds and aggressive offensively. She also had a willingness to drive to the basket,” said Greene head coach Bill Case. “She was a concern for us, and late in the game, she was their go-to player.” Johnson was at her best the latter stages of the season when UV won three of its last four games to make postseason play for the first time in five years. She was in double figures scoring in all of those games and finished with 13 double figures scoring games.