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Girls Basketball players earn league honors

Mallory Rath, a junior, Alyssa Pulkinghorn and Ashley Albee, seniors, were among players who were recognized as top athletes in the Pioneer Valley League. Photo by Brandon McGinnis

After a very successful basketball season, five girls from Bear River’s Girls Varsity Basketball team were chosen to receive the All-Pioneer Valley League title.

Senior post player Ashley Albee talked about how what it means to win All-Pioneer Valley League.

“So how it works is at the end of the season, all the PVL coaches meet up and each vote on who they think should get all league from each team,” she said. “This year our team got 5 nominees which is pretty cool and it just means that the coaches from Colfax, Placer, Foothill, Lincoln, and Center saw how well we performed in the games, but the five players on our team were some of the best among the league so that’s how we got the awards.”

Within All-League, there are different levels of acknowledgement. A player may be awarded First or Second team depending on how they are ranked by the coaches. Senior guard Alyssa Pulkinghorn and Junior post player Mallory Rath were selected as First Team All-League. Albee as well as junior guards Katelyn Meylor and Kylee Dresbach-Hill were chosen as Second Team All-League.

“Personally I got second team all league in PVL,” Dresbach said. “This represents Bear River I think really well to show that such a small school can go so far and compete. With schools that are really good and even just in league, being able to be and compete with some of those larger schools and girls who play year round when we don’t have a lot of really experienced girls and the fact that we were able to grow so much as a team. It was really neat.”

Receiving this title is a huge source of pride for these girls.

“It’s an honor because I get to share this award with a couple of my teammates who also got the same title,” said Meylor.

“I am very honored to get this award because not many people do,” confessed Rath. “It’s just like a big honor. I got All-League and first team and out of the whole league we have a couple of players that are the best out of the whole league, out of all the schools that play.”

Head Girls Varsity Basketball Coach Randy Billingsley discussed the award granted to his players.

The team members put forth a lot of effort throughout this season and for many of them, being chosen for All-League was recognition well-deserved.

“I believe I was selected not only for my basketball skills but also for my leadership skills,” Pulkinghorn said. “Getting this award means a lot to me. I’ve been working hard since I first started playing to become the player I am today and it means a lot that I got recognized for being an all league player. It’s an honor to know that I’m noticed for my hard and leadership on my team.”

“I’m very proud of all the girls who competed for and earned all league honors,” he said. “I think it was warranted for each kid. For us to have 5 players on 1st and 2nd team is a testament to how hard they’ve worked this year.”

“I think they picked me because they saw that I’m a team player,” said Albee. “I like to assist my team-mates and help them get open for easier shots which is key. Getting this award just makes senior year that much better, like it’s an honor and it’s really awesome and I’m grateful I got it this year!”

Albee considered other team members worthy of the All-League Honor.

“I definitely think Rebecca Van Patten and Grace Sypnicki both should have also got this award and recognition because they worked their hardest always and it’s disappointing the league didn’t recognize that,” said Albee. “But I’m very proud of everyone who was rewarded this year as well!”

The 2017 season as a whole was very successful for one Bear River Girls Basketball and the many All-League selections proved to be a testament to this fact.

“I think it just shows how hard we worked this year and what we achieved overall,” Meylor exclaimed.

“You know it was really cool to see the team come together and be able to push that far even if we were faced with adversity, and I think our coach had a lot to do with that,” Junior Kylee Dresbach-Hill said.

“I’m very proud of all the girls who competed for and earned all league honors,” said Head Coach Randy Billingsley I think it was warranted for each kid. For us to have 5 players on 1st and 2nd team is a testament to how hard they’ve worked this year.”

Kaylee Guerra contributed to this report.

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Girls Basketball players earn league honors