Video: Jersey Wolfenbarger highlights
See the Suddenlink Player of the Year in action.
First, is there a better name in all of basketball than Jersey Wolfenbarger? The six syllables just roll off the tongue, and once you've heard the name, you aren't going to forget it.
Second, is there anything better than a 6-foot-1 point guard? How about a 6-4 point guard? Wolfenbarger has grown three inches since she entered high school, and she was an elite player at 6-1.
Coaches know how importance of big guards, especially in an era when high school teams love to press and trap. But if the ball-handler is 6-4, then the double team is worthless unless the defenders are at least 6-2 — and even the best high school teams don't have two girls 6-2 and athletic enough to trap in the open court.
But Wolfenbarger isn't just tall. She can shoot, handle and rebound. She also has an exceptional basketball IQ, which combined with her size and skill, makes her our choice as the 2019-20 Suddenlink Arkansas Player of the Year.ARKANSAS ALL-STATE TEAM PRESENTED BY SUDDENLINK
Coriah Beck, Fayetteville
5-11 | Senior | Guard | Memphis
Beck stepped up in the 6A semifinals against Northside — which turned out to be the last game of the season — and poured in 24 points to lead Fayetteville to a 55-53 win. And the Memphis-bound senior is one of the many big guards Arkansas is producing these days.
5-11 | Senior | Forward | Arkansas
Being left-handed is an enormous advantage in basketball — no matter how many times coaches tell defenders a girl is left-handed, players just can't seem to make the adjustment — but on top of that Eaton is a crafty, highly skilled one-on-one player. And Arkansas verbal commit shoots 41 percent from 3-point range and 86 percent from the line.Sasha Goforth, Fayetteville
6-0 | Senior | Forward | Oregon State
Goforth finished a very, very close second to Jersey Wolfenbarger in two categories — best name and MVP — but there's no doubt the Oregon State commit is an elite player. She has great range, can attack in transition, rebounds and even has a pull-up jumper.
6-0 | Senior | Guard | Tennessee
Arkansas definitely leads the nation in great names, as it's Destiny's destiny to help pay Kellie Harper's salary at Tennessee next season. And yes, Salary is another big guard who knows how to use her size and strength in the paint.
6-4 | Junior | Guard | Uncommitted
Player of the Year averaged 18.8 points per night, while adding 6.1 rebounds and 3.9 assists nightly.Second Team
6-2 | Junior | Forward | Uncommitted
Bershers, of course, benefited from the presence of Wolfenbarger, but she made 44 percent of her 3-pointers all on her own. And she added 15.4 points, 6.6 rebounds and 4.0 assists a game.
5-9 | Freshman | Guard | Uncommitted
It didn't take long for Clardy to take center stage the perennial Arkansas power. Even as a freshman, her athleticism enabled her to create shots, get to the rim and score 22.8 points a game.
5-7 | Junior | Guard | Uncommitted
She's that rare combination of game manager and big-time scorer, as she's known as an unselfish point who runs the show – but when points are needed, she's ready. Want proof? Higginbottom scored 69 points in the last two playoff games for 30-3 Batesville in the 4A postseason.
5-7 | Senior | Guard | Georgetown
In a state filled with big guards who use strength and size, Georgetown-bound Ott is a dogged defender who uses her quickness and speed to both harass opponents and get to the rim.
5-7 | Senior | Guard | Central Missouri
Farmington finished 32-3, thanks in great part to Vanzant's efforts, but didn't get to play the 4A final because of COVID-19. She didn't need that final game to cement her spot, though, as she averaged 16.4 points and 5.4 assists a game, with a 2.5 assist-to-turnover ratio.Third Team
6-4 | Junior | Post | Uncommitted
There is a place for defense on all-state teams, and the 6-4 Dauda controlled the paint for 27-1 Bentonville with her shot-blocking and rebounding. Her athleticism also made her a weapon in transition, and as she adds offense, she will have even more impact.
5-3 | Junior | Guard | Uncommitted
The biggest star on the unbeaten Star City team, diminutive junior Johnson is the spark plug for the 32-0 4A power. And don't underestimate the difficulty of going through a long season without a single loss — any unbeaten team has had an exceptional year, regardless of enrollment.
Haitiana Releford, Northside
5-9 | Sophomore | Guard | Uncommitted
is third Northside player on this list, and note that all three return
next year — which gives you a quick preview of the preseason No. 1 in
Arkansas for the 2020-21 season. Releford's strengths are shooting (45
percent from distance), defense (2.1 steals a game) and rebounding (a
team-leading 6.5 a game, despite being only 5-9).
Amauri Williams, North Little Rock
6-0 | Junior | Guard | Uncommitted
another tall, versatile guard, Rogers can shoot 3s, post up, defend and
handle the ball — which made her a perfect backcourt complement to
point guard Ott for 23-6 Little Rock Christian.
6-3 | Sophomore | Post | Uncommitted
In the age of position-less basketball, Williams is a power post. She uses her physicality in the paint to both protect the rim and produce offense. And she's got two more years.