My career in photojournalism began during the summer of 1987. Since then, I have witnessed many outstanding high school teams. Here are 10 of the most exciting girls’ basketball teams I enjoyed covering from 1987 to 2009.
While some outstanding teams are not included on this list, causing some disagreement, remember that I had to choose from many and these are the ones most exciting to me as a photojournalist.
Minneapolis North 1988, Coach Jim Dubose
The Polars won their second consecutive City Conference championship behind the outstanding play of center Gloria Holcomb, forwards Stacia Hines and Daphne Walker, and guards Margaret Davis, Ebony Kelly, and Queen Wilson.
Minneapolis Roosevelt, 1989, Coach Frank Hentges
The Teddies stopped the Polars’ quest for a three-peat by winning the City conference crown with center Angelique Brittain, forwards Kim Carpenter, Jenny Hanson, and Katrina Wheeler, and guards Cindy Hovet, and Carita Goines leading the way.
Minneapolis North, 1998, Coach Faith Johnson Patterson
Miss Basketball and Metro Player of the Year forward Tamara Moore, along with guards Tiara Medlock, Abby Reed, Felcia Bell, Mauri Horton, forward Jill Kalvik, and center Tisa Thomas, led the Polars to the Class AAA state title finishing with a 29-0 record.
Minneapolis North, 1999, Coach Faith Johnson Patterson
Horton, a senior who was named Metro Player of the Year and Miss Basketball, led the Polars to their second straight Class AAA state crown with Reed, Thomas, Kalvik, and Medlock contributing to a 24-2 record.
St. Paul Central, 2001, Coach Willie Taylor
Guards Vel Williams, Serena Nalls, and Nakia Carlisle, center Michele Thomas, and forwards Rikiee Ellis and Nina Boyd led the Minutemen to a third-place finish in Class 4A competition and a 27-3 record.
Minneapolis North, 2003, Coach Faith Johnson Patterson
Guard Mia Johnson teamed with center LaRaea Starr and backcourt mates Tyrai Bronson, Kandis Williams, and Faith Buchanan, leading the Polars to the Class AAA state championship with a 28-2 record, the first of a three-peat.
St. Paul Central, 2007, Coach Willie Taylor
Miss Basketball and Metro Player of the Year guard Angel Robinson, along with center Georgie Jones, forwards Kiara Buford, and Ebony Black and guards Theairra Taylor, Cyonna West, Shayla Johnson and Abby Gust led the Minutemen to a Class AAAA state championship with a 32-0 record.
St. Paul Central, 2008, Coach Willie Taylor
Robinson was gone but Buford and Taylor emerged as team leaders and led them to their second consecutive state Class AAAA title with Jones, West, Taylor, Howard, Kyanna Johnson, and Samantha Robinson-Ricks. Finishing with a 28-4 record.
Minneapolis South, 2009, Coach Ahmil Jihad
Behind Metro Player of the Year and Miss Basketball Tayler Hill’s 47 points in the Class AAAA state championship game, she teamed with Tyisha Smith, Europe Guy, Gabrielle Roberts, and Ameshia Courney, leading the Tigers to the title while compiling a 31-2 record.
Minneapolis North, 2009, Coach Faith Johnson Patterson
Led by senior post player Brianna Edwards and eighth-grade guard Seyanna Johnson, Chelsy McGee, Talaya Rich, and Allina Starr led the Polars on an improbable run to a runner-up finish in Class AAA competition.
Quite the list!