• Bill Davis/News Danville’s Jordan Elliott (00) dribbles up the court while teammate Lauren Mickley (40) looks for a pass during the first half of Thursday’s Division IV regional semifinal against Fairfield Christian. The Blue Devils won, 42-30.
  • Fred Main/News Danville’s Jordan Elliott (00) goes up for a shot past Tree of Life defender Mallory Garbee (23) during their Division IV sectional final game Saturday at Danville. Jordan had a triple-double to lead the Blue Devils to a 98-34 victory.
  • Bill Davis/News Danville’s Jordan Elliott, left, and Ally Bower guard Northside Christian’s Anah Hooley during the first half of Monday’s Division IV sectional semifinal. The Blue Devils won, 91-9.
  • Bill Davis/News Danville’s Jordan Elliott, center, looks to score while being guarded by Centerburg’s Olivia Vance (30), Maddy Harmon, rear, and Savannah Gammell during the first half of Friday’s nonconference game. The Blue Devils won, 43-42.
  • Bill Davis/News Mount Vernon’s Taylor Gregory (33) goes up for a shot in the first half of Saturday’s nonconference game against Watkins Memorial. Gregory scored 22 points as the Yellow Jackets won, 48-31.
  • Bill Davis/News Mount Vernon’s Morgan Jessup, left, dribbles up the court while defended by Julia Kocher, center, and Gabby Stover during the first half of Thursday’s Ohio Cardinal Conference game. The Yellow Jackets won, 57-44.
  • Bill Davis/News Mount Vernon’s Taylor Gregory, left, grabs a rebound while Lexington’s Julia Kocher looks on during the first half of Thursday’s Ohio Cardinal Conference game. The Yellow Jackets won, 57-44.
  • Bill Davis/News Mount Vernon’s Taylor Gregory, left, pulls down a rebound while defended by West Holmes’ Kacie Leppla during the second half of Monday’s Ohio Cardinal Conference game. The Yellow Jackets won, 30-23.
MOUNT VERNON — Of the many outstanding players in the Mount Vernon News area, there were two whose talents stood out from the rest. Both are seniors, team leaders and well-versed in all aspects of the game of basketball. And that’s why the News has announced that Danville’s Jordan Elliott and Mount Vernon’s Taylor Gregory have been named the area girls’ Co-Players of the Year.

Elliott, who has already been named the Division IV Central District Player of the Year and a First Team All-Ohio, led the Blue Devils to a third-place finish in the Mid-Buckeye Conference and District championships. The 5-foot-8 Elliott averaged 18.9 points and 6.3 assists per game, all area highs, as well as 4.6 steals, second in the area, and 8.5 rebounds per contest. The Mount Union signee was fourth in the area with a 52.1 shooting percentage.

Gregory played all over the court for the Yellow Jackets, playing post, wing and point with equal skill. A Division I Third-Team All-Ohio and First Team Central District selection, the 6-2 Gregory was second only to Elliott in scoring for the area (18.5 ppg). She shot 52.4 percent overall and 42.2 percent from three-point range, both in the area top five, and also made 68.9 percent of her free throws. Gregory was second in the area with 9.6 rebounds a game, and added 2.2 assists, 2.1 steals and 1.8 blocks per game. She will play Division I NCAA basketball at the University of Akron next season.

Joining Elliott and Gregory as area First-Team choices are Danville’s Lauren Mickley, Utica’s Emily Londot, Cardington’s Kyndall Spires and Mount Vernon’s Alexa Skal.

Mickley, a 5-9 junior, was also Division IV First Team All-District. She second to Elliott in scoring in team scoring (15.8 ppg) after shooting 43.3 percent overall and 38.8 percent from behind the arc, and was 64.0 percent from the free-throw line. She contributed 2.2 steals, 4.6 rebounds and 0.8 blocks per game.

Londot, a 6-1 freshman, did not start most games for the Redskins, but still was the only area player to average a double-double (14.2 points, 11.4 rebounds). She led the area in shooting (58.2 percent) and in blocks (2.2 per game), and tallied 1.9 steals per game. She was a Division III Central District Second Team selection.

Spires, a Division III Central District Honorable Mention, was the top scorer for the Mid-Ohio Athletic Conference Blue Division champion Pirates at 12.9 per game. She shot 48.5 percent overall, and tallied 8.9 rebounds, 1.9 blocks, 1.7 assists and 1.89 steals per game.

Skal, a Division I Central District Honorable Mention, was Mount Vernon’s top defensive player and playmaker. She handed out 4.8 assists per game, third in the area, and made 2.3 steals per contest. She also scored 8.6 points per game.

Five players earned Second Team honors: Amber Riley of Fredericktown, Cierra Joiner of Centerburg, Peyton McCord of Mount Vernon, Sage Brannon of Cardington and Lyndsay Burnett of Utica.

Riley topped the Freddies with 12.0 points and 8.7 rebounds a game, and tied for the top three-point percentage in the area (50 percent). She also made 66.7 percent of her free throws.

Joiner was a Division III Central District Honorable Mention after topping the Trojans with 13.2 points, 9.0 rebounds, 2.3 steals and 2.0 blocks per game. He also dished out 2.3 assists a game, and shot 39.0 percent overall and 37.2 from behind the arc.

McCord, a Division I Central District Honorable Mention, scored 9.8 points per game. She was second in the area with a 55.6 shooting percentage and third with 9.5 rebounds per game.

Brannon, a 5-7 junior who was a Division III Central District Second Team honoree, led the area with 4.6 steals per contest, and also made 5.1 rebounds a game from her point-guard spot. She scored 11.6 points per game and dished out 4.5 assists a game.

Lyndsay Burnett, another Division III Central District Honorable Mention, shot 43.1 percent from the floor and 71.4 percent at the stripe, third in the area. She was second on the Redskins with 9.4 rebounds per game, and second in the area with 2.0 blocks per contest.

Honorable mention was earned by the following: Cardington’s Casey Bertke and Kynlee Edwards; Centerburg’s Sidney Fields and Savannah Gammell; Danville’s Taylor Duncan, Cece Newbold and Sydnee Wears; East Knox’s Mattea Forshey; Fredericktown’s Bailey Riley; Highland’s Taylor Belcher and Erica Sardinha; Johnstown’s Sammy Edwards, Courtney Moore and MacKenzie Schneider; Mount Vernon’s Maggie Nussbaum; Northridge’s Hallie Martin; and Utica’s Emily Keener and Tatum Minton.

With two players on the area First Team, an MBC championship, a district title and a regional finals appearance to his team’s credit this season, Danville’s Matt Proper was named the Coach of the Year. Proper’s team has reached the district championship game for each of the past four years, and finally won the title on March 4, 49-31, over Fairfield Christian, the third-ranked team in the state. The Blue Devils finished with a 20-7 record after falling to the incumbent state champion, fourth-ranked Waterford, in the regional finals on March 9, 50-35.

 

Geoff Cowles: 740-397-5333 or gcowles@mountvernonnews.com and on Twitter, @mountvernonnews

 

 

 

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