LOGAN – Cache Valley Media Group is proud to present its Region 11 All-Region awards for the 2023 Girls Basketball season. This season featured numerous great players and several dominant teams as Region 11 featured three of the best teams, not only in 4A, but in the entire state of Utah. The region produced the 4A state champions, the Ridgeline Riverhawks, who marched through the season with a perfect record.
The awards and All-Region teams were voted on by Cache Valley Media Group’s group of high school broadcasters, including “Hurricane” John Newbold, Jason Walker, Clint Payne, Dave Simmons, “The Patriot” Nick Zollinger, Jake Ellis, “The Coach” John Olsen, Cade Forest, Terrell Baldwin, Trent Carter, Josh Theurer, Logan Webber and Eric Frandsen.
REGION 11 SUPERLATIVES
Most Valuable Player — Emilee Skinner (Ridgeline)
Defensive Player of the Year — Hallee Smith (Ridgeline)
Sixth Player of the Year — Nora Wosnik (Green Canyon)
Coach of the Year — Ainsli Jenks (Ridgeline)
FIRST TEAM ALL-REGION
Emilee Skinner, So, Guard (Ridgeline)
21.2 Points | 6.6 Rebounds | 3.5 Assists | 3.8 Steals | 0.8 Blocks
Emilee Skinner dominated 4A as just a sophomore and rightly earned Region 11 MVP and is likely to take home All-State honors as well. She led from the front on arguably the best team in the state. Skinner won Region 11 Player of the Week honors three times this season, not only the most among all region players in either boys or girls, but the only player to win the award multiple times this season. But her coach, Ainsli Jenks, summed up her contributions and accomplishments as well any anyone.
Coach’s Quote (Ainsli Jenks): “Emilee Skinner is the type of player that comes along once in the lifetime of a high school basketball program, if you’re lucky; some programs may never see a player like her. She is so fun to coach, to cheer for, and to be around. She wants the best for her team and elevates the play of the girls around her. Emilee has innate leadership qualities; her teammates look up to her, even though most of them are older.
“She fills up the stat sheet on a nightly basis, but statistics aren’t what motivate her – she simply loves to win. Emilee had an incredible sophomore season for Ridgeline, eclipsing the 1,000 point career scoring mark in the state championship. Most high school players are fortunate to reach the 1,000 point milestone by their Senior year, not too many Sophomores get there. Emilee can score in a variety of ways too, inside or outside, and she does it efficiently. Despite averaging four less min of playing time per game this season, she improved on her phenomenal freshman scoring average and field goal percentage. Emilee also led our team in assists, steals, and rebounds. She gets it done on both ends of the floor. We are fortunate to have Emilee on our team, and so excited she is back next year – and the next.”
Hannah Radford, Sr, Guard (Sky View)
16.2 Points | 4.2 Rebounds | 2.2 Assists | 1.5 Steals | 0.1 Blocks
Hannah Radford spearheaded the Bobcats second run to the state title game in three seasons. And while Sky View came up short in their title endeavor, Radford had a memorable season, especially in the playoffs. Radford won Player of the Week honors for the first week of February, finished third in the region in points per game, and produced one of the more impressive individual playoff performances. Against region foe Mountain Crest, Radford scored a career-best 36 points to power a win. And in the following game against Snow Canyon, she hit a buzzer-beating jumper to send the Bobcats to the championship round.
Coach’s Quote (Vanessa Hall): “Hannah was so steady for us this year. The thing that was great about Hannah is that not only was she a threat from the outside, but she also had a great inside game. She was a great leader for us this year and always stepped up in the big moments as was evident during the semifinal game against Snow Canyon. I’m lucky to have had the opportunity to coach Hannah.”
Maren McKenna, Sr, Guard (Green Canyon)
16.9 Points | 9.0 Rebounds | 2.6 Assists | 2.6 Steals | 0.9 Blocks
Aside from perhaps only Skinner, Maren McKenna proved to be the most all-around player in not only Region 11 but all of Utah girls basketball. McKenna was a constant double-double threat, finishing second in the region in points per game and third in rebounds. She was also a major defensive presence too. She powered Green Canyon to a tie for second place, largely on the strength of a win over Sky View on Feb. 14 — a game in which McKenna had 30 points and 16 rebounds. McKenna earned Player of the Week honors in the final week of the regular season.
Coach’s Quote (Alexis Clegg): “Maren is a high energy player with a deep desire to win. She has been an incredible as asset to our team throughout her high school career. She is a player that can fill up the stat sheet in all categories and prides herself in working hard and is always improving her game. She loves her teammates and has had a positive impact on our program.”
Gracie Riley, Sr, Guard (Bear River)
15.2 Points | 9.7 Rebounds | 1.5 Assists | 1.5 Steals | 0.4 Blocks
Gracie Riley led a Bears squad that sought to shake off a five-win season in 2021-22 and thanks largely to her efforts, Bear River were able to more than double its win total from the year prior. Riley finished second in rebounds in Region 11 and fourth in points per game.
Coach’s Quote (Josie Pugsley): “Gracie is not only a great basketball player and athlete, but more importantly, she is an amazing person. Her teammates look up to her and voted her captain this season. She is the definition of a hard worker on the court, in the classroom and while serving in the student body. She is a leader on and off the court and keeps a level head in any situation. Everyone gravitates towards Gracie because of her energetic personality and ability to include everyone. It was my privilege to coach her this past season.”
Elise Livingston, Jr, Guard (Ridgeline)
13.2 Points | 1.9 Rebounds | 2.9 Assists | 1.8 Steals | 0.4 Blocks
Though she nominally played second fiddle to her MVP teammate, Elise Livingston shone in her role, displaying high efficiency and a great ability to make teams regret paying too much attention to Skinner. Livingston saved some of her best for last, averaging 18.8 points per game over the last five games of the season, including the playoffs, helping push the Riverhawks over the top in an undefeated season.
Coach’s Quote (Ainsli Jenks): “Elise Livingston never stops putting in work, both in-season and out of season. She is a fierce, tireless competitor that absolutely loves the game. Elise usually has to be told to leave the gym because coaches want to go home. The work that Elise puts in translates to her game on the court, she’s improved each year and I’m sure we’ll see that again next season. She’s developed into a great outside shooter for us, but is also strong off the dribble when attacking the basket. She’s a good passer, she sees her teammates when they make a great cut, and she’s willing to make the extra pass on the perimeter. Her focus and competitive nature really set her apart as an athlete. She is so much fun to coach and always wants to get better. Anytime Elise comes off the floor she’s asking coaches what she can do better or differently to help the team. She wants to be her very best self in order to be the best for the team. We’re so excited that we’ll have Elise back for another season.”
SECOND TEAM ALL-REGION
Kali Jones, Jr, Forward (Mountain Crest)
11.6 Points | 10.4 Rebounds | 1.5 Assists | 1.5 Steals | 2.4 Blocks
Coach’s Quote (Megan Smith): “Kali was a big contributor to our team this year on both offense and defense. This year Kali broke the school record for rebounds in a season with 249, an amazing accomplishment. Kali is only a junior and has so much more basketball ahead of her. Kali is an outstanding student and an amazing teammate not only on the court but off the court as well. I have really enjoyed working with Kali the past three seasons and I can’t wait to see her achievements in the coming years.”
Cambree Tensmeyer, Sr, Guard (Green Canyon)
11.5 Points | 2.4 Rebounds | 3.4 Assists | 1.5 Steals | 0.2 Blocks
Coach’s Quote (Alexis Clegg): “Cambree is a player that has made a huge impact on our program. She works hard day in and day out to improve and reach her goals. Her determination and leadership as our point guard really helped make our team successful. She’s a phenomenal athlete with a great work ethic and I am grateful to have been her coach.”
Hallee Smith, Jr, Guard (Ridgeline)
10.8 Points | 3.6 Rebounds | 3.2 Assists | 3.3 Steals | 0.1 Blocks
Coach’s Quote (Ainsli Jenks): “Hallee Smith is the defender that you never want to have guarding you. I don’t think opposing guards have very much fun playing against her because she is absolutely relentless. She makes opponents work for everything, including every inch as they bring the ball up the court. She made it her personal goal to make it difficult for every player she guarded, and I believe she succeeded. Hallee is another uber-competitive player, everything is a competition, from being the first one to the gym and the last to leave, to competing in every drill in practice. She is a fun one to coach. Sometimes during practice we’d ask defense to go 70% effort while the offense learned something new, but with Hallee on defense we always had to tell her that it meant 25% effort for her. She loves the game and has spent countless hours perfecting her skills. This year she was more productive on the offensive end for us, particularly with her perimeter shooting, and her emergence as an outside threat helped us become a team that was tougher to defend. We are so excited to have Hallee back with us for another season.”
Addey Merrill, Sr, Guard (Sky View)
9.8 Points | 2.6 Rebounds | 3.1 Assists | 1.8 Steals | 0.0 Blocks
Coach’s Quote (Vanessa Hall): “Addey did a great job this year of handling the basketball. She really stepped up as our point guard and was able to find the open man and led our team with assists. She was also a huge 3 point threat for us this year. She was able to knock down some big shots for us in some big games. Addey also stepped up on the defensive end and many times was tasked with guarding the opposing team’s best player. It has been amazing being able to coach Addey for the last four years.”
Melanie Hiatt, Sr, Forward (Sky View)
11.8 Points | 7.4 Rebounds | 1.9 Assists | 1.3 Steals | 2.8 Blocks
Coach’s Quote (Vanessa Hall): “Melanie was a huge part of our team this year before and after her injury. Mel was such a presence for us inside this year. She was tough on both sides of the basketball. Her ability to shot block made it tough on any team and she was so steady offensively for us on the inside. I was really impressed with how Mel handled her injury and the positive attitude and team mentality that she brought to the team. I’ve loved having the chance to coach Mel the last four years.”
HONORABLE MENTION ALL-REGION
- Brinli Weiss, Jr. (Ridgeline)
- Jenna LaCroix, Sr. (Bear River)
- Kourtney Payne, Sr. (Sky View)
- Lily Smith, So. (Mountain Crest)
- Macie Brown, Jr. (Ridgeline)
- Marissa Best, Jr. (Green Canyon)
- Nia Damuni, Sr. (Ridgeline)
- Paige Egbert, Jr. (Mountain Crest)
- Stella Anhder, Sr. (Green Canyon)