It was a night to honor the best in northwest Georgia basketball last Thursday as the Northwest Georgia Tip-Off Club held their 32nd annual Team of the Year Banquet at Berry College’s Krannert Center, and several local players earned recognition for impressive seasons.
Sonoraville’s Wil Walraven was the big honoree on the night as the senior was named the high school male Most Valuable Co-Player of the Year. He shared the honor with Cartersville’s Jaylon Pugh and LaFayette’s Alex Kelehear. Walraven was the leading scorer for the Phoenix this past season as he helped the team to a program-record 23 wins and their third-ever state tournament berth.
Sonoraville and Calhoun had three players honored as well for the girls and boys as there was separate awards for each teams’ Player of the Year, Player of the Month for December and Player of the Month for January.
For the Sonoraville boys, the Player of the Year was Walraven, and Trent Daniel and Lucas Brooks were the Players of the Month for December and January, respectively. The Calhoun boys were led by Player of the Year Davis Allen and Players of the Month Chase Goble (December) and Porter Law (January).
On the girls side, the Sonoraville Lady Phoenix had Maliyah Parks honored as the Player of the Year and Alexa Geary (December) and Grace Darnell (January) as Players of the Month. Rounding out the local team honors for the Calhoun girls was Erin Davis as Player of the Year and Anna George (December) and Railey Greeson (January) as Players of the Month.
Former Calhoun and Gordon Central coach Ray Tucker was also recognized at the banquet as the recipient of the Graham Woodell Award and honored along with John McFather, Mike Tobin and Lesyer Galyon in the 400 Wins Club.
The players and coaches in attendance were treated to a meal and the awards presentation by Tip-Off Club President Ron Roach. The guest speaker for the night was Berry head football coach Tony Kunczewski. There were various honors awarded for college players of the year, middle school team and coaches of the year and high school team and coaches of the year.
In other recent prep basketball news:
Locals to compete in Senior All-Star Game
Some of the top senior players in the area will all be on one court on March 15 as they compete in the fourth annual Northwest Georgia Tip-Off Club Senior All-Star Game at Georgia Highlands College in Rome.
The girls game will start at 6 p.m. with the boys to follow. There will be halftime entertainment and 3-point contests for the girls and boys between games. Admission is $5.
There will be one local player competing in the girls game, which is Calhoun’s Erin Davis. She will be a part of the visiting team coached by Pickens’ Brandan Thomas.
The boys’ game will feature several local ties as the visiting team will be led by Sonoraville head coach Brent Mashburn. On the visiting roster for Mashburn will be Sonoraville’s Wil Walraven and Lucas Brooks along with Calhoun’s Porter Law.
The rest of the team will be made up of players from Cartersville, Christian Heritage, Coahulla Creek, Cass and Adairsville.