The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

High School Sports

April 20, 2013

Spolarich, Akers thrilled to play

Tip-off at noon at Eastern Greenbrier Middle School

The old saying goes, if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em.

That’s exactly the case for Westside Lady Renegade Morgan Spolarich today in the Scott Brown Memorial Classic, to be played at Eastern Greenbrier Middle School in Fairlea.

Spolarich is one of 11 players for the A/AA All-stars. She’ll be joined by former rival Miki Glenn from Bridgeport. Glenn scored 22 points in a 44-27 victory over Westside in the Class AA championship just over a month ago.

“When we had our first practice, we just looked at each other and laughed,” Spolarich said. “It’s much better playing with her than it was against her.”

Spolarich and Glenn will be joined on the A/AA All-stars by Jessica Brown (Fayetteville), Tyra Wynes (Summers County), Chandra Harrah (Meadow Bridge), Laura Young (Nicholas County), Tristan Toman (Ritchie County), Hunter Sodrao (Braxton County), Paula Ord (Poca), Sheila Hopkins (Bluefield) and Brandi Clevenger (Webster County).

They’ll have to contend with a much taller AAA All-star team, highlights by 6-foot Bianca Andre from Greenbrier East, 6-foot-1 Kaylee Dickenson from Shady Spring and 6-foot-2 Allison Thompson from Morgantown.

“The AAA team is really tall,” Spolarich said. “But we’re really fast, so we’ll push the ball as much as we can. We have speed on the outside and some shooters.”

The A/AA team will also have to deal with Register-Herald Girls Player of the Year, McKenzie Akers from Princeton.

“I’m excited (for the game,” Akers said. “I’m very thankful to get to play with some of the best people in the state. It’s going to be fun.”

Akers averaged 25.2 points, 5 assists, 2.6 steals and 3 rebounds a game. For that, she was named captain of the Class AAA All-State team.

Like Spolarich and Glenn, Akers will be teaming up with former rival in Lady Spartan Andre.

“I’ve been head to head with Bianca,” Akers said. “It’s pretty good to play with her instead of against her.”

Akers also had high remarks for Greenbrier East and AAA All-stars coach Jim Justice.

“Practice was good,” Akers said. “Jim was very fun. He’s really relaxed. He wasn’t worried about jamming plays down our throats. We were just scrimmaging, he talked to us about life and stuff. I really liked it and I’m excited to play.”

Rounding out the AAA team will be Maddee Carroll (Greenbrier East), Leah Taylor (Morgantown), Carly Kelley (Preston) and Kayla Boggs (University).

The festivities will begin at 10 a.m. today at Eastern Greenbrier Middle School with a skills competition, 3-point shoot-out and free throw contest. The game will tip at noon.  Tickets will be sold at the door for $4 for adults and $2 for students.

E-mail: jrollins@register-herald.com and follow on Twitter at @JDanielRollins

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