By JOURNAL STAFF
Each member of the 2021-22 Shreveport-Bossier Journal’s All-Metro girls’ basketball team was instrumental in their team’s drive for state championships this season. And nobody came as close as Parkway, which fell to Ponchatoula 80-79 in a double overtime thriller in the 5A state championship game.
Parkway’s Mikaylah Williams, the Gatorade Louisiana Girls’ Basketball Player of the Year, is Player of the Year on the 2021-22 first team. The 6-1 junior forward averaged 22.6 points, 3.7 assists, and 2 steals per game while leading the Lady Panthers to the state finals.
“Mikaylah is a special, once-in-a-lifetime talent,” Southwood coach Kendrick Golatt says of Williams, the nation’s No. 1 recruit for 2023. He would know, as his Lady Cowboys faced the Lady Panthers twice during the regular season. “She can do everything and more on the basketball court. But, in my opinion, the one thing that separates her from everybody else is her commitment and dedication to being great.
“She is definitely the best talent this area has seen since Alana Beard. But I’ll go one step further and say, in my opinion, she’s better.”
Williams is joined on the first team by Parkway teammate Chloe Larry, a 5-6 sophomore guard who had a game-high 34 points – including 28 in the second half – in the Lady Panthers’ heartbreaking loss in the finals.
Also leading their schools to the 5A playoffs this season were Southwood’s Jermesha Frierson and Kayla Hampton of Airline. Frierson, a 5-6 junior guard, averaged 22 points for the Lady Cowboys, who fell to Lafayette in the quarterfinals. Hampton, a 5-8 senior forward, averaged 17.5 points and 6.3 rebounds per game for the Lady Vikings, who fell to No. 1-seeded Walker in the second round.
Senior Kalea Dean, who led Huntington (20-7) to the semifinals of the Class 4A state championship, rounds out the first team. The 5-8 senior forward averaged 17.4 points and 12 rebounds per game.
Coach of the Year is Parkway’s Gloria Williams, who led the Lady Panthers to a 32-2 overall record that included a perfect 14-0 performance in District 1-5A as well as a runner-up finish in the state championship.
“This was a history-making season,” says Williams, “and the best is yet to come. Stay tuned.”
The SBJ All-Metro first and second teams were chosen by our staff in close consultation with local coaches and basketball observers.
Our “Best of the Rest” includes players who were given serious consideration for the top 10 spots.
2021-22 SBJ GIRLS ALL-METRO TEAM
Mikaylah Williams (6-1), Parkway, Jr.
Jermesha Frierson (5-6), Southwood, Jr.
Kalea Dean (5-8), Huntington, Sr.
Chloe Larry, (5-6), Parkway, So.
Kayla Hampton (5-8), Airline, Sr.
PLAYER OF THE YEAR – Mikaylah Williams, Parkway
COACH OF THE YEAR – Gloria Williams, Parkway
Sanaa Brown, Bossier, Jr.
Jada Stewart, Benton, Sr.
Tarellya Baber, Woodlawn, Sr.
Carley Hamilton, Captain Shreve, Fr.
Dakota Howard, Haughton, Fr.
Best of the Rest
Tiffany Siharath, Loyola
Zakiyah Williams, Plain Dealing
Marissa Schoth, Benton
Kori Rice, Airline
Minnie Williams, Southwood