Bland County and George Wythe picked up the top honors as the Mountain Empire District has chosen its all-district teams for the 2018-19 boys’ basketball season in voting conducted by the MED coaches at their recent annual meeting.
Bland County’s Jake Watters was named player of the year after leading the Bears to a 12-9 overall record and a third-place finish in the MED race. George Wythe’s Pat Burns was named coach of the year for the regular season champion Maroons, whose only MED losses came at the hands of Bland County.
Watters becomes the 15th different player and 17th overall Bland County selection to be named as player of the year and first since Asher Dillow (2012-13). Watters broke three of Dillow’s records during this past season.
Watters averaged 23.1 points and 5.8 rebounds per game while hitting nearly 48 percent of his shots from the floor, with 41 three-pointers. He also hit just under 62 percent from the foul line while picking up nearly two steals and two assists per game. With 30 blocked shots, he padded his career total to 80, a Bears’ record. He finished his career with 1,576 points, second to Dillow’s record of 1,662.
Joining Watters on first team was Bland County teammate Patrick Christian, George Wythe’s Ty Farrow and Josh Reeves, Auburn’s Ethan Millirons and Taylor Newcomb, Fort Chiswell’s Kolton Sutphin, and Jake Hollingsworth of Grayson County.
Christian averaged 8.2 points and 7.5 rebounds a game for Bland County, hitting just over 48 percent from the field and just under 45 percent from the charity stripe. He blocked 29 shots, second to Watters’ 30.
The second team was represented by George Wythe’s Dorrien McMillian, Avery Mabe, and Payton Coe as well as Austin Ford and Rusty Marshall of Auburn, Matthew Musick and Parker King of Fort Chiswell, and Blake Hawkins of Grayson County. Six of the eight are underclassmen.
Another 12 players were named honorable mention and included Brady Harris and Michael Royal of Auburn, Keaton Beeman and Cade Ashworth of Galax, Gage Hankins and Trey Harden of Bland County, Javon Flippin and Chase Pope of Grayson County, Payton Blackburn and Nathan Deel of Rural Retreat, and Siler Watson and Isaac McHone of Fort Chiswell.
All-MED girls honors released
The Mountain Empire District has announced its all-district honors for the 2018-19 girls’ basketball season. Voting was conducted by the league’s head coaches during their annual meeting that was held recently.
Top honors went to Galax senior Essence Brown, who was named as player of the year for the second consecutive campaign, and Doug Campbell of George Wythe, who was voted as coach of the year after leading the Maroons to a second place finish in the MED standings.
Joining Brown on the first team was Galax teammate Shae Foxx, George Wythe’s Drea Betts, Mckenzie Ingo, Paeton Phillippi, and Meleah Kirtner, Rural Retreat’s Michaela Fiscus, and Auburn’s Alyson Martin.
Second team honors went to Bland County seniors Emily Ratliff and Sydnee Moses as well as Mackenzie Harmon of Fort Chiswell, Ashlyn Brady of Galax, Hannah Roberts of Rural Retreat, Becca Harding of Auburn, and Jacie Bennett and Breanne Brewer of Grayson County.
Ratliff led the Bears in scoring this past season by averaging 13.3 points per game while also grabbing five rebounds per contest. She was a 31 percent shooter from the floor, connecting on 26 three-pointers. She also hit nearly 71 percent of her free throws (136/192) while picking up just over two steals per game.
Moses picked up three double-doubles during the season while averaging 8.6 points and 7.3 rebounds a game. She hit almost 34 percent from the floor and 61 percent from the foul stripe (60/99).
Several other players from throughout the district picked up honorable mention honors. Included in that group was Bland County’s Sydnie Stowers and Cheyenne Holston.
Watters named Region 1C player of the year, Christian 1st team
Bland County’s Jake Watters followed up his All-MED accolades by being named as player of the year for Region 1C and teammate Patrick Christian was also named to the first team in voting by the region’s coach held recently.
Watters and Christian were joined on first team by George Wythe’s Ty Farrow and Josh Reeves, Parry McCluer’s Zach Claytor, Auburn’s Ethan Millirons and Taylor Newcomb, and Covington’s Tijon Rice.
Six of the eight are seniors with Farrow, a junior, and Millirons, a freshman, the only underclassmen.
Named to the Region 1C second team were Dorrien McMcMillian of George Wythe, Austin Ford of Auburn, Isaac Armstrong and Josh Chapman from Parry McCluer, Ryan Perdue of Narrows, Eastern Montgomery’s Garrett East, Covington’s Jabari Williams, and Craig County’s Dalton McPherson.
Terry Millirons of MED tournament champion Auburn was named as coach of the year.