Pima signs 10 freshmen to women’s basketball teamby Andy Morales on Apr. 10, 2013, under Sports
10 incoming freshmen signed up to play women’s basketball with Pima Community College Tuesday night at a ceremony held at the Riverpark Inn.
Coach Todd Holthaus introduced the group that included seven local standouts, two from the Phoenix area and one from Georgia.
Alicia Jones – Palo Verde
Adrianna Barrientez – Palo Verde
Melody McLaughlin – Mountain View
Julia Cooper – Catalina Foothills
Amanda Gamez – St. Gregory College Prep
Brittany West – Canyon del Oro
Alexa Arndt – Sabino
Jayla Brown – Phoenix Desert Vista
Kendall Hunt – Maryvale
Mercedes Gillon-Gant – Lowndes (Valdosta, Georgia)
Jones was the TucsonCitizen.com’s Player of the Year for the 2011-12 season. Her 18.5 points a game along with 6.5 rebounds on a team loaded with talent should have earned her a consensus POY award for that year.
Her teammate Barrientez was the point guard that placed third in the state. Barrientez is like an elusive rabbit on the court with spurts of energy that makes her very difficult to guard.
McLaughlin was an All-Southern Arizona selection along with Cooper of Catalina Foothills. McLaughlin shined even with help from standouts Jessica Salaz and Lauren Reece. We were there when she committed to Pima.
Cooper did not have the supporting cast that McLaughlin had but she was still able to almost carry her team to the state playoffs.
Gamez was a D-IV Performer of The Year recipient and she helped her coach, Dr. Michelle Berry, reach the honor of Coach of the Year while at St. Gregory along with her teammate Grace Baranowski.
Dr. Berry feels Gamez may be the first girl to play college basketball from St. Gregory.
West came on the scene from almost out of nowhere to earn second team recognition for her work at CDO. Her leadership and fight on the court will work well at the next level.
Arndt recovered from a severe case of the Epstein-Barr virus when she was a junior to be one of the top prospects in her senior year at Sabino. Arndt flirted with offers from out of state but she chose to stay home and be an Aztec.
I am proud to say I saw all seven local standout play in high school.
The returning sophomores will be Raja Moreno (Tucson High), Rachel Williams (Laveen Cesar Chavez), Shayna Porter (Peoria Centennial) and Felicia Foster (Peoria).