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Wildcats lead TVL girls

Greenwood junior Kenedy Stroup was a unanimous first-team Tri-Valley League all-star and league MVP, the top selection of four local players named to the squad. Stroup was the TVL scoring leader with 328 points (20.5 points per game), as well as finishing first in freethrows made with 85 and fourth in assists with 60. She also had 44 steals, 114 rebounds and 37 blocks in league plays.

The Wildcats came in second in the TVL West Division with a record of 14-2.

Along with Stroup, Alli Walton was a first-team selection.

“It was an honor for both girls to be voted TVL all-stars, however it’s a testament to their teammates as well,” Wildcats coach Jeff Deitz said. “They wouldn’t have been able to do what they did without a great supporting cast around them. That being said, I am extremely proud of both Kenedy and Alli for these honors.

“(Stroup) was tough to stop no matter what defense the opponents played. Her ability to get to the basket is incredible,” Deitz said. “She was really good in transition for us and on the defensive end was a fierce rebounder and shot blocker. You don’t find those qualities in a point guard too often. Her on-the-ball defense made it tough for opponents to get around. She’s a humble, hard working player, and it was an honor for her to be recognized as league MVP by opposing coaches.”

Walton, like Stroup a junior, finished sixth among the scoring leaders with 196 points, averaging 12.25 per game. Walton led the league in rebounding with 210 as well as blocks with 54.

“Alli was a force inside,” Deitz said. “As the season progressed, Alli became a weapon from the outside, becoming very efficient with her jump shot from 15 feet. She also became a much better passer as the season progressed.”

In Kevin Kodish’s final season as basketball coach, Juniata got a second-team selection in senior Chloe Zendt.

Zendt, a rarity on the underclass-dominated squad, was ninth among the scoring leaders with 170 points (10.63 per game). Zendt was third in assists with 72 and collected 126 rebounds.

“Chloe Zendt was one of just two seniors for us and she was a great leader for our team,” Kodish said. “We asked her to score, be a ball handler, be a key rebounder and be our defensive stopper. She accepted all assignments with a smile and did a superb job.

“She is richly deserving of all star honors and she is a true student athlete,” Kodish continued. “She is No. 1 in her class and she has received an appointment to West Point. You don’t see that combination very often. I’m so happy for her.”

The Tigers of East Juniata came in third in the TVL West with an 11-5 record. East Juniata as a team led the league in scoring defense allowing only 30.19 points per game. The Tigers held Newport to just five points in a game.

Thea Neimond was given a second team nod as the junior led the TVL in assists with 75 as well as in steals with 72.

“A fantastic player — she had a really good season,” Tigers coach Travis Quici said. “With the way the team was build we didn’t need her to be a scorer. We wanted her to be a true point guard and she did that all year.”

Quici was named TVL coach of the year, but believes that the award isn’t just for him — it is for the entire program.

“That award goes to my staff and the girls,” Quici said. “It’s award that we won. I wouldn’t be successful without them my three coaches and 17 players. It’s been about us all season.”

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