The Alabama High School Athletic Directors and Coaches Association released the all-star teams for the upcoming North-South All-Star Game, and both Southern rosters are dominated by smaller schools.
The Southern Girls’ roster includes four players from the River Region, an unusually high number of players from mid-level schools.
Prattville’s Christian duo of CoCo Thomas and Hannah Jones, along with Emma Kate Smith of Trinity and KK Hall of St. James, give the river area an unprecedented representation of its small schools. Ironically, none of the biggest schools in the region are represented on the 2022 team.
Add Linden center Timya Thurman, Loachapoka goalie Taylah Murph-Dowdell, Luverne goalie Khashya Richardson and University Charter School goalie Kendall Lacoste and this year’s South squad will be comprised mostly of lower-ranked players or average.
In 2019, for example, the only player in the region was Carver’s Kristin Brown. In 2020, the group selected for the game included Renijah Brown from Marbury, Gabby Perkins from Brantley, and Karoline Striplin from County Geneva (although the game itself was not played due to COVID-19 restrictions).
Last year’s team included PCA point guard Ella Jane Connell and Montgomery Academy’s Chloe Johnson, but both selections were obvious choices since Connell had just been selected as 3A Player of the Year and Johnson was AISA Player of the Year after playing the previous season at Lee-Scott Academy.
While the All-Star Girls teams in the South primarily include players from the 6A and 7A programs, the boys team often includes up to half a dozen players from schools in the 1A-4A range and this year no is no different.
The Southern boys team includes Catholic point guard LJ Green, Cottage Hill Christian brothers Tyler and Trent Thomas, Jaden Nixon of 1A Autaugaville and Terrin Brown and Keldric Faulk of 2A Highland Home.
The team also includes guards Jeff Davis, Zidkijah Edmond and Ketwan Reeves.
Loachpoka’s Shane Colquohoun and Williamson’s Shumbe Hunter will coach the team, while LAMP coach Robb McGaughey will serve as administrative coach.
The selection marks the second straight year that a Catholic player has been selected for the game and the third year that a player from Autaugaville has made the all-star team.
Last year McKenzie Bristow-Matthews of Autaugaville and Matthew Reardon of Catholic made the team and in 2020 Dewaun Stubbs of Autaugaville was selected for the match with JD Davison of Calhoun.
In 2019, Ellwood Christian’s Justin Bufford was selected for the match. Bufford would then transfer over the summer to Catholic.
AHSADCA notes the game will be played during Alabama All-Star Sports Week in Montgomery July 18-22, but does not specify a location. The game has been held at Alabama State’s Dunn-Oliver Acadome since returning to the capital in 2011, but was canceled by COVID-19 in 2020 and moved to the Cramton Bowl Multiplex in 2021 to comply with COVID-19 protocol. 19 of the ASU.