Before we close the book on the 2018-19 Washington high school girls basketball season, former Central Valley girls basketball coach Freddie Rehkow is taking a position by position look at the underclassmen that emerged as stars.
Please note that there are many more players that could be — and most likely will be — recognized by the start of next basketball season. Many of the players in this list have been seen or already recognized through their performances from this past season. Rehkow will be on the summer basketball trail and watching for next season’s rising stars. If you see him at a camp or tournament, please feel free to drop some names of players to watch.
Like with all lists, someone is always left off. If you have a suggestion of a player we should watch or potentially recognize, please let us know. You can leave a comment below or email Coach Rehkow at firstname.lastname@example.org.
From Cashmere’s Hailey Van Lith to Eastlake’s Haley Huard, here are 16 guards that are ready to do big things in 2019-20:
Raigan Barrett – Junior – Rogers (Puyallup)
Barrett is a 5-foot-5-inch guard who was the 4A South Puget Sound League MVP and led her team to the Round of 12 at the Tacoma Dome in the state playoffs. Barrett is also an outstanding softball player who has committed to the University of Washington.
Callie Stevens – Junior – Bellarmine Prep
Stevens, a 5-foot-6-inch guard, was instrumental in Bellarmine Prep’s upset of Central Valley in the opening round of the 4A state tournament. She was a First Team All-Tournament selection at the state tourney and a 4A All-SPSL First Team selection. Stevens is a quick-release shooter with a passion and motor that helps run the show for Bellarmine.
Dayla Ballena – Junior – Kentridge
Ballena is the floor leader for Kentridge. She helped lead the Chargers deep into the state playoffs the past two years and was a 4A North Puget Sound League First Team All-League selection. Ballena, who has good length at 5 feet 8 inches tall, works well with her post players and averaged 3.6 assists this past season.
Julianna Walker -Sophomore – Annie Wright
Walker is a dynamic 5-foot-6-inch guard who can shoot from anywhere on the floor — and most likely will make it. She led the state in scoring this past season at 33.9 points per game while leading Annie Wright into the state playoffs. Walker has a quick release and was a First Team All-Tournament selection at the 1A state tourney.
Hailey Van Lith – Junior – Cashmere
Van Lith, one of the top players in the country for the Class of 2020, averaged more than 32 points and 8 rebounds for 1A Cashmere this season. A 5-foot-9-inch left-handed point guard, Van Lith led Cashmere to a third-place finish at the 1A state tournament, tallying 24 points, 9 rebounds and 6 assists in their third-place victory over Medical Lake. She has already won two gold medals playing with USA Basketball, and she will have her pick of colleges after next season.
Talia von Oelhoffen – Sophomore – Tri-Cities Prep
Another super sophomore, von Oelhoffen was named MVP of the 2B girls basketball state tournament after leading Tri-Cities Prep to its first state championship. One of the top sophomores in the country, the 6-foot point guard had 25 points, 8 steals and 7 assists in Tri-Cities Prep’s 50-42 victory over Liberty in the state championship game. She is poised for a huge junior season.
Riley Dykstra – Junior – Lynden Christian
Dykstra led the Lyncs to the brink of back-to-back 1A state titles, falling just short in the title game to La Salle. Dykstra, a 5-foot-10-inch guard, is a lockdown defender and outstanding 3-point shooter.
Ashlyn Wallace – Sophomore – Clarkston
Wallace is as smooth as they come. She led her Clarkston team to the 2A state semifinals and is a high-energy player who can take you off the dribble, pull up and drain a jumper or dump off a quick pass to her post players. A 5-foot-6-inch guard, Wallace has been a dominant player at the 2A level and will make a huge impact in any game she’s playing.
Jazmyn Stone – Freshman – Annie Wright
Stone, a 5-foot-5-inch guard, plays alongside Julianna Walker, giving us the high school version of the Splash Sisters. Stone is a very unselfish player who can drop points on you without you really even knowing it’s happening. She averaged 19.5 points per game last season, and coupled with Walker’s 33.9 ppg, this backcourt duo is one of the best in the state.
Ellie Boni – Junior – University (Spokane)
Boni, a long 5-foot-10-inch guard, can handle the ball, pass it, and score. She has been an impact player since her freshman year and her senior season could be one of her best. Boni has the ability to take players off the dribble and has a deadly pull-up jumper that makes her difficult to defend. One area of her game that is often overlooked is her ability to make amazing passes and anticipate where her teammate will be.
Niveya Henley – Sophomore – Mt. Spokane
Henley is a 5-foot-10-inch wing who is a force to stop. She was a key cog in helping the Wildcats get to the 3A state championship game and instrumental in helping take some of the scoring load off of Aspyn Adams. Henley can play inside or outside and is definitely one to watch next season.
Andie Zylak – Sophomore – Lewis & Clark
Zylak is one of the most underrated guards in the state. She was a key reason why the Tigers were able to make a run to the 4A state championship game. Standing 5 feet 6 inches tall, Zylak is a scrappy, feisty guard who will drive, shoot, and pass with the best of them. Definitely one to keep an eye on for the next two years.
Kendyl Carson – Junior – Prairie
Carson is an athletic 6-foot wing player who helped Prairie win the 3A state championship. She is a smooth, skilled player who can change the game in a matter of minutes. Her ability to shoot, defend, and rebound makes her one of our many guards to watch in 2019-20. However, Carson is reportedly moving back to Alaska, where she played as a freshman.
Nakia Boston – Junior – Lynnwood
Boston is well known on the West side of Washington, but many across the state haven’t been exposed to her game. She averaged 14.9 points, 7.2 rebounds and 3.7 assists this past season and will only get better in 2019-20. An athletic 5-foot-10-inch guard, keep an eye on Boston and Lynnwood next season.
Haley Huard – Sophomore – Eastlake
One of the tallest guards in the state, the 6-foot-1-inch Huard helped Eastlake win the 4A state championship this past season. With her size she can be a difficult matchup for many of the guards in state. Huard has the ability to run the floor, shoot it from outside and crash the boards. With more experience and Sara Goldie’s coaching, this kid should be a tough one!
Aaliyah Collins – Sophomore – Glacier Peak
Collins is a 5-foot-5-inch guard who knows how to defend and run the show. She was an instrumental piece of Glacier Peak’s success this past year and will be an even more instrumental piece in their success going forward. Collins can defend, pass, and score when called upon. A tough guard with a nose for the ball, Collins is a difference maker.
— Freddie Rehkow