We’re still in the first month of the new year, but girls’ high school sports in Arizona are already setting high marks for 2015.
Page High School came into the new year with a strong tailwind that included 19 straight victories. Since Jan. 1 they’ve extended that incredible win streak to 24 and haven’t scored fewer than 50 points in any of those last five games.
And they’re doing it without a scoring star, counting on team work to get the job done. The Sand Devils have just two players that are averaging in double digits – and just barely at that. Ashley Dempsey, a junior who plays in the post at just 5’8″, is averaging 12.3 points a game. Senior guard Ember Sloane averages 11.2 ppg.
The situation is a little different at Sierra Linda High School in south Phoenix, where the Bulldogs have a smooth-shooting guard that is averaging 17 points a game – and she’s just a freshman.
But Janae Gonzales‘ age made little difference in her record-setting performance a week ago against Tempe High School. The 103-14 win was an embarrassing display of running up the score, but that shouldn’t diminish what the freshman guard was able to accomplish.
The 51 points she put up included 14 three-pointers, which set a new state record for varsity girls’ basketball, replacing the old mark which was set 10 years ago. And she puts in the work needed to be able to produce that kind of result, reportedly shooting 200 3-point shots before each practice.
Her sharpshooting has helped Sierra Linda, which is averaging 57 points a game, to an 18-2 record overall and an undefeated roll through section play. The Bulldogs play Central High School on the road tonight, but Central is 5-11 overall and has lost four of its last five games – but has scored 50 or more points in each of those last five games.
And now, turning our attention to another sport…
After the Prescott High School girls’ soccer team’s 10-0 win yesterday over Coconino High, the Badgers have outscored their opponents in the last six games, 61-1. All have been played since the new year began.
The driving force for the Badgers this season has been their senior forward, Madalyn (Maddy) Markham, who scored three goals in yesterday’s win over Coconino and has piled up 30 goals and 67 points this season, which averages out to about three goals per game. She has also contributed to her teammates’ success with seven assists on the year.
Prescott (8-3) will meet Flagstaff High (6-4-1) tomorrow night in a match-up of conference unbeatens.