Evening Sun Girls' Basketball All-Stars

For at least 20 years, the girls’ basketball teams in Chenango County have boldly stated their merit on the floor as top-notch representatives of the game. Five teams this season finished with 14 or more wins and winning percentages better than 70 percent. Three teams won division titles, one claimed a league championship, two players were chosen to a team that selects only the best of Section IV...and there is more.

– Three-time All-Evening Sun All-Star, Hannah Runyon of Norwich, was named Section IV’s Class A Player of the Year, the first Norwich girl to earn that distinction.

– Tanya Barnes of G-MU surpassed 1,000 career points, just the third Raiders player to pass that total.

– Oxford’s Haley Witchella also crossed 1,000 career points, and her career mirrors Barnes’, although the style each plays is much different.

– Sherburne-Earlville seniors Caitlynn Adams and Bridget Irwin had large hands in the best three-year run of basketball success in the program’s history. The duo played on back-to-back league champions, and won 48 games over the past three years, more than any other local team.

As we did last year, we broke down our all-stars into a first and second team. We can safely conclude that every athlete on our all-star team was either an all-division or all-conference player in their own league.

On our squad are returning first-team all-stars Runyon, Witchella, Adams, and Irwin. Barnes and Bainbridge-Guilford’s Randi Conway make the jump from second team to first team.

Our second team all-star group includes first-timers Amanda Off of Unadilla Valley, Shania Vandermark of Bainbridge-Guilford; Kaitlin Gorton of Greene; Cassie Beaver of Sherburne-Earlville; and returning second-teamer, Bryn Loomis of Norwich.

This year’s all-star team was chosen with the aid of our area basketball coaches. The boys’ basketball all-stars will appear in an edition next week.


(Players listed alphabetically)

Caitlynn Adams, S-E, 5-foot-8, senior

Bridget Irwin, S-E, 5-foot-7, senior

Over the past three seasons, Adams and Irwin have played on teams that won two Center State Conference division titles, and won 48 total games, the best string of victories for any players over a three-year span in school history. The duo is inexorably linked despite differing playing styles on the floor. Adams was more of an outside shooting threat with the ability to slash to the basket, whereas Irwin created most of her scoring opportunities in the low post. “They both did so many things well, and they always came through in the clutch,” said S-E third-year coach, Karen Mulligan. “If one was struggling, the other would always pick it up.” Adams led S-E in scoring at 13.6 points per game, while Irwin topped the team in rebounding and steals to go with 13.3 points per game. Neither was separated by more than a point in scoring over the past two seasons with each player taking turns as the leader. Irwin also added a pair of triple-doubles this season in points, rebounds, and steals. Adams banged in a team-high 26 three-pointers, and scoring 20 points or more three times. “I’ve had both of them for a long time,” Mulligan said, who coached her senior standouts for five straight years if you include junior varsity. “You could always rely on those two getting something done. Our style will probably change not having them around.”

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