By Scott McDonald
Batesville Daily Guard
Although the 2019-20 high school basketball has not yet officially ended, the Arkansas Sports Media released its second annual High School Basketball Super Team on Thursday.
A panel of sportswriters and sportscasters from around the state which voted on the Top 10 every week during the season chose the Super Teams in a recent vote.
BOYS FIRST TEAM
• Justus Cooper, Izard County F 6-5 Sr.
• Davonte Davis, Jacksonville G 6-4 Sr.
• Derrian Ford, Magnolia G 6-3 So.
• Chris Moore, West Memphis F 6-6 Sr.
• Jaylinn Williams, FS Northside P 6-10 Sr.
BOYS SECOND TEAM
• Payton Brown, Waldron G 6-4 Sr.
• Riley Felkins, Jonesboro Westside G 6-3 Sr.
• Caleb London, Conway F 6-4 Sr.
• Detrick Reeves, Marion G 6-3 Sr.
• Ben Turner, Trumann F 6-6 Sr.
Zane Butler, Greene County Tech; Tamarous Dodson, England; Jakari Livingston, LR Mills; Nick Smith, Sylvan Hills; Kel’el Ware, North Little Rock
GIRLS FIRST TEAM
Elauna Eaton, Nettleton G 6-1 Sr.
Sasha Goforth, Fayetteville G 6-1 Sr.
Izzy Higginbottom, Batesville G 5-8 Jr.
Kenley McCarn, Melbourne G 5-10 So.
Jersey Wolfenbarger, FS Northside G 6-4 Jr.
GIRLS SECOND TEAM
Chloe Clardy, Conway G 5-9 Fr.
Maryam Dauda, Bentonville P 6-4 Jr.
AJ McCandlis, Viola G 5-6 Fr.
Wynter Rogers, LR Christian F 6-0 Jr.
Makenna Vanzant, Farmington G 5-7 Sr.
GIRLS HONORABLE MENTIONS
Bailey Augustine, Walnut Ridge; Tracey Bershers, FS Northside; Shy Christopher, Cabot; Aubrey Isbell, Mountain View; McKenzie Jones, Kirby; Briley Pena, Nettleton; Destiny Salary, Jonesboro
Only two players were unanimous choices and both of those were girls — senior Elauna Eaton of Nettleton and junior Isabella Higginbottom of Batesville. The two super stars split their two regular season meetings this past season.
Higginbottom, a junior, was the only starter returning from the 2019 Class 4A State Champion Lady Pioneers but she was named the MVP of last year’s state tourney.
She went from averaging 16 points to almost 30 points a night in 2019-20 and scored over 40 points several times. She led the Lady Pioneers to their second straight 30-3 season and a share of the 4A-3 Conference title and both the district and regional tournament championships.
Eaton, a senior, averaged 23.1 points and 7.9 rebounds a game and led the Lady Raiders to a 27-5 record and a share of the 5A-East Conference title.
After losing to Mountain Home twice in regular season, Eaton and the Lady Raiders defeated the Lady Bombers in the semifinals and was set to play Greenwood for the Class 5A State Championship before the last two days of the State Finals in Hot Springs were indefinitely postponed due to the COVID-19 virus.
Those games have still not been rescheduled or canceled.
Three players on the first team this year made the first team last year. Eaton and Higginbottom were two of those with the third being Fort Smith Northside junior Jersey Wolfenbarger.
As a sophomore, she helped lead the Lady Bears co the Class 6A State Championship. This season, Wolfenbarger averaged 18.8 points, 6.1 rebounds and 3.9 assists per game as the Lady Bears finished 26-4 but fell in the state semifinals.
Sasha Goforth of Fayetteville moved up to the first team this year after being an honorable mention last season.
Goforth, who will play at Oregon State next season, led the Lady Bulldogs to a 23-5 record and a runner-up finish in the 6A-West. Goforth led the Lady Purple Dawgs to a 55-53 upset victory over Fort Smith Northside in the Class 6A state tourney and was set to face Bentonville in the championship game before it was wiped out.
The fifth and last member of the first team is Melbourne sophomore Kenley McCarn who stepped up to become the Lady Bearkatz leader after last year’s 2A State MVP Reagan Rapert moved to Missouri.
McCarn averaged around 16 points a game and led the Lady Bearkatz to a 34-2 record and their second-straight Class 2A State Championship. She was also named the state tournament’s MVP.
Two freshmen were named to the second team, Chloe Clardy of Conway and A.J. McCandlis of Viola.
Clardy stepped in and became the Lady Wampus Cats’ leading scorer this season and stepped it up another notch when sophomore Jaiden Thomas, the team’s second leading scorer, was injured in early January and missed the rest of the season.
McCandlis was instrumental in leading the Lady Longhorns to a school-record 40 victories this season and a runner-up finish to Kirby in the Class 1A State Championship. McCandlis averaged 11.6 points, 4.7 assists and 3.3 steals a game.
Farmington’s Makenna Vanzant is the only senior on the second team as she led the Lady Cardinals to a 32-3 record and a victory over defending state champ Batesville in the Class 4A state semifinals. Vanzant averaged 16.4 points, 3.5 rebounds and 5.4 assists per game.
Bentonville junior post Maryam Dauda couldn’t get into ASM’s first team but is ranked the top junior post in the nation and has not made a commitment. She led the Lady Tigers to a 27-1 overall record and a perfect 14-0 mark in the 6A-West.
Wynter Rogers of Little Rock Christian is the fifth member of the second team and was an honorable mention last season. Rogers helped lead the Lady Warriors to a state championship her sophomore season. This year the Lady Warriors finished 23-6.
There were no unanimous selections to the boys’ team but there are three who made the first team who were also first-teamers last season: Justus Cooper of Izard County, Chris Moore of West Memphis and Arkansas commitment Jaylin Williams of Fort Smith Northside.
Cooper led the Cougars to a 39-6 record and to the runner-up trophy in Class 1A as they were clipped 48-47 in the title game by Nevada. Cooper was a four-year starter for the Cougars which posted a 153-24 record during that time. He is also a four-time All-State team selection.
Moore led the Blue Devils to a 26-4 overall record and to the 5A-East Conference title. He had a great run during the Class 6A state tourney, averaging 17 points and 16 rebounds a game in leading West Memphis to the championship game.
Williams, the tallest player on the ASM Super Team, held the Grizzlies come out of nowhere to win the Class 6A state title last year. Williams will be an Arkansas Razorback next year.
Another Razorback commitment, Davonte Davis of Jacksonville, is the fourth senior on the first team. Davis averaged 21 points, 10 rebounds and eight assists in leading the Titans to a 20-5 record, the 5A-Central Conference title and a berth to the Class 5A State Championship game. Davis will also suit up for the Razorbacks next season.
Derrian Ford of Magnolia in the only underclassman on the first or second team this year and was named to the second team as a freshman last season when he helped lead the Panthers to the Class 4A State Championship.
Ford was the leading scorer on this year’s squad that finished 26-0 and made a return trip to the state title game.
Detrick Reeves of Marion makes his second straight appearance on the second team after he led the Patriots to a 16-14 record and a second place finish in the 5A-East.
Payton Brown of Waldron made the second team this year after being an honorable mention last season. Brown led the state in scoring with 32 points a game.
Riley Felkins of Jonesboro Westside was right behind Brown with a 31.4 points per game average in leading the Warriors to the 4A-3 District Tournament championship. Felkins knocked down a career-high 46 points in an 82-69 victory over Batesville on January 24.
Caleb London of Conway helped lead the Wampus Cats to a 21-8 record and to the Class 6A State Championship.
Ben Turner of Trumann scored over 2,000 points in his career with the Wildcats and averaged 25 points per game this season.