The azcentral.com Sports Awards, presented by Arby’s, will honor an Athlete of the Year in every sport at the event on April 30.
At the end of each season, azcentral sports will announce three finalists for each Athlete of the Year award. The finalists are listed alphabetically.
All three will be invited to the awards show where the winner will be announced live.
A Coach of the Year in every sport also will be selected at the end of each season. From the winter sports honors, a finalist for the overall Coach of the Year award will be announced and invited to the event.
Tickets are on sale for the event at sportsawards.azcentral.com.
Below, also find the American Family Insurance ALL-USA Arizona Boys Basketball Team and All-Conference teams for the Arizona Interscholastic Association chosen by the azcentral sports staff and the Canyon Athletic Association chosen by that league.
Big Schools Boys Basketball Athlete of the Year finalists
School: Tempe Corona del Sol
The University of Arizona signee finished a brilliant four-year career with a school-record 2,254 points, breaking a 20-year record held by Lamont Long, who had 2,118 in his career.
Alex Barcello averaged 24.2 points, 5.8 rebounds, three assists, 2.1 steals and made 89.3 percent of his free throws this season, leading the Aztecs to the 6A Conference championship game.
“This year was really good,” Barcello said. “We all enjoyed each other. We were close on and off the court. We made a great run. It just didn’t turn out like we wanted it to. You can’t always be perfect, but we learn from it.”
Coach Neil MacDonald, who worked with Barcello the past two years, calls the senior a strong fabric of the school.
“Alex is a special player, the type that doesn’t come along often and has been an important part of our campus community over the past four years,” MacDonald said. “As a player, he is as efficient as any high school player I have coached or seen, and as a student and person, Alex consistently demonstrates the highest levels of character, respect and responsibility, and is a credit to both his school and his family.”
School: Phoenix Shadow Mountain
Marcus Shaver’s return to mainstream public-school basketball was a huge success.
After having to sit out the first nine games because of the transfer rule, the former prep academy player took off, leading the Matadors to a 27-0 record and the 4A Conference championship. In the final, he made 6 of 10 3-pointers and had 29 points in an 81-48 rout of Tucson Salpointe Catholic.
Shaver was held to under 20 points only twice in 18 games. He averaged 22.4 points, making 55 percent of his field goals and 52 percent of his 3-pointers (56 for 108). He also shot 85 percent from the free-throw line and averaged 2.5 assists and 2.7 steals.
“He deserves All-Arizona if not state Player of the Year,” coach Mike Bibby said. “He did more than you asked. He scored the ball. He played defense. He made passes when the ball needed to be passed. He played an all-around game. He was always calm and cool. He has the total package in his game.”
Shaver, who has signed with UC Santa Barbara, felt the instruction he got from Bibby raised his game to new heights.
“Our practices are like game-related, so when I get out there, it’s easier,” Shaver said. “I definitely had a chip on my shoulder, especially after having to sit out the first nine games of my senior season. I had to go out with a bang.”
School: Glendale Apollo
The 6-foot Holland Woods was determined to take the Hawks to the 5A Conference championship. It didn’t work out in the end with his shot just a tad too late that would have beaten Phoenix Sunnyslope in overtime. But he was great down the stretch in the final, scoring 33 points and forcing overtime against a team Apollo had beaten twice, including a 41-point, triple-overtime effort by Woods. Woods averaged 27 points, 5.7 assists, 3.9 rebounds and 1.8 steals for the 26-4 Hawks.
“I was really hungry this year after going down in the first round last year to Elijah Thomas and Sunrise Mountain,” Woods said. “I wanted to get that state championship. Unfortunately, it didn’t work out. But for me, myself, I just worked hard to get to where I was.”
Coach Jacob Marin, whose son, Dre, was a great backcourt complement, averaging 22 points and 4.7 assists, said Woods’ passion for the game made him the player he became.
“First thing that makes him stand out is he is a basketball junkie,” Marin said. “He lives in the gym and is constantly trying to improve his game.
“He is as good of a ballhandler as there is, and, when you combine that with his court vision, he is just able to see and create things before other players can react to it. As he continued to grow and get stronger, he was just almost impossible to keep out of the paint. Once he gets into the paint, he finishes, gets to the line or both, as well as creates for others very efficiently.”
Big Schools Coach of the Year
School: Chandler Basha
Season recap: Basha won 30 games, losing just once, and captured the school’s first boys basketball state championship, beating Tempe Corona del Sol 75-65 in the 6A Conference final. Basha’s only loss came in the final regular-season game, a 59-57 setback to Gilbert Perry that only reignited a senior-laden team that was led by the powerful inside-outside punch of forward Gabe McGlothan and guard Terrell Brown. Grothaus, who won a state championship as a player in 2003 at Gilbert under Tom Bennett, saw four years ago when he took over the program how special this senior class would eventually become.
Coach Grothaus’ comments: “I knew there was something different about them. The competitive nature of them was all get out. It didn’t matter what they were doing, if it was 3 on 3 in the off-season, summer ball, they wanted to win. They’re very close, all great friends off the floor. They were always hanging out on the weekends, doing movies, just always together. The goal was to put banners in the gym. It started with the region championship. We got that, and then it was to get a state championship. The things we talked about, we were not afraid to put it out there and do the things we needed to do to accomplish it.”
Small Schools Boys Basketball Athlete of the Year finalists
School: Phoenix NFL Yet
The 6-foot-4 Shekeedren Bryant lifted NFL Yet to its first Arizona Interscholastic Association state championship, winning 30 games in the 1A Conference. He averaged 13.9 points, seven rebounds and 2.8 steals a game. He had 21 points and 17 rebounds in the 75-50 state championship victory over Tuscon The Gregory School. In the semifinals, Bryant pulled down 10 rebounds and scored 11 points in a 77-53 win over Red Mesa.
“He was the tallest guy, but I let him play all five positions,” coach Humberto Ramirez said. “It really doesn’t matter the division that you’re in, it’s how you play. He can play. He’s very competitive. He’s probably a better game-time player than a practice player.”
Bryant said that he was happy about whatever role the team needed him to play. He worked hard on both ends of the floor.
“I felt we surprised a lot of people, but at the same time, I felt we were capable of meeting our goal,” Bryant said. “We stayed in the gym every day after school. Nobody missed practice.
“I was just trying to help the team out, however I fit in. Play defense.”
Robert “B.J.” Burries
B.J. Burries averaged 26.3 points in 30 games this season, making 104 3-pointers and converting 188 of 226 free throws for the 3A Conference Tigers. He also averaged 4.2 assists, 5.1 rebounds and 4.6 steals. Burries is on pace to scoring 3,000 career points. As a freshman, he scored 694 points, averaging 23 points. That included a 3A state-record 68 points in a 105-103 win over Florence. He has amassed 1,484 points in his first two years in high school playing varsity.
“He’s a tough kid, a coach on the floor,” Globe coach James Simmons said. “We run a Paul Westhead system, so it’s perfect for him. He can go out run and gun. We push the ball and keep playing hard. He makes shots. He gets kids in position where they need to be. His greatest asset is that he’s a great young man.”
Burries lives on the San Carlos Apache Indian Reservation, where his passion for basketball grew with his uncle helping him.
“I just need to get into the weight room, keep working on my game and focus on my grades,” Burries said.
Burries had a four-game stretch late in the season when he had 51 points against Safford, 41 against Florence, 30 against Coolidge, and 48 against Queen Creek American Leadership.
“I tried not to think about it,” he said. “I just play the game. I’ll notice it after the game is over.”
School: Gilbert Christian
Nate Graville missed close to three weeks early in the season after developing tendinitis in a knee. Coach Kurt Keener shut him down to heal. When he came back, the 6-foot-7 Graville was the difference maker, leading the Knights to the 2A Conference state championship. His performance against Pima, a team that few in 2A could match up with because of its size, was huge. He had 17 points and seven rebounds in the 48-40 semifinal win. He followed that up with 21 points and 17 rebounds in a 66-51 victory over Whiteriver Alchesay and packed crowd of pro-Alchesay fans.
“Alchesay, I never heard anything like that,” Graville said. “I couldn’t hear myself speak.”
Graville averaged 14.5 points and 9.1 rebounds in 24 games. He was part of two state championship teams at Gilbert Christian. Two years ago, Gilbert Christian won the crown in the second-highest level.
“Coach Keener is a legendary coach, and he taught me a lot,” Graville said. “He taught me a lot off the court, too, as one of my teachers.”
Keener saw how much Graville wanted to finish his high school career as a champion. Gilbert Christian won its last 18 games with Graville in the lineup.
“He wanted to make an impact,” Keener said. “He is our most skilled player. He can score inside and score outside. It was a matter of incorporating him back in. In a way, it was a blessing (him being out). It caused other guys to step up. When he came back, we had more options. When we got into the state tournament, you saw his impact and ability to take over the game.”
Small Schools Coach of the Year
Season recap: Bob Wolk left Texas, intrigued by a coaching job on the Navajo reservation, where basketball is religion. In his first season at Ganado, he led the Hornets to a 27-5 record and 3A Conference state semifinal finish. Ganado lost to Winslow in the semis. He said it was the school’s first winning season since 1996 when it went 22-10 and lost to Kayenta Monument Valley in the state final. Wolk, 65, never had one of his Texas teams get past the state quarterfinals.
Coach Wolk’s comments: “The first thing I did was take the 6-foot-8 kid (Jamaal Coleman) who liked to play behind the arc and move him into the paint area and try to find a way to get him the ball as much as we could. We knew every game, he would be double-teamed and boxed out. It would be difficult at times. We had to come up with more schemes for teams to try to stop us. The coaching staff worked hard, things fell into place and darn if we didn’t get there.”
American Family Insurance ALL-USA Arizona Boys Basketball Team
Alex Barcello, Tempe Corona del Sol, 6-2, Sr.
University of Arizona-bound guard broke Lamont Long’s 20-year-old school record for all-time points with 2,254. Long’s record was 2,118.
Saben Lee, Corona del Sol, 6-3, Sr.
Vanderbilt-bound do-everything player scored 1,104 career points and averaged 21.3 points, 7.4 rebounds, 4.2 assists and two steals during tremendous senior season.
Gabe McGlothan, Chandler Basha, 6-5, Sr.
Army commit was heart and soul of 6A championship team, averaging 14 points and 10 rebounds.
Marcus Shaver, Shadow Mountain, 6-3, Sr.
The UC Santa Barbara signee averaged a team-best 22.4 points and made 6 of 10 3-pointers in 4A championship blowout of Tucson Salpointe that helped team cap 27-0 season.
Holland Woods, Glendale Apollo, 6-0, Sr.
Portland State signee averaged 27 points and six steals on 5A runner-up team.
Alex Barcello, Corona del Sol, 6-2, Sr.
Saben Lee, Corona del Sol, 6-3, Sr.
Gabe McGlothan, Chandler Basha, 6-5, Sr.
Nikc Jackson, Tucson Sunnyside, 6-8, Jr.
Nico Mannion, Phoenix Pinnacle, 6-2, Fr.
Donald Carter, Laveen Cesar Chavez, 6-1, Sr.
Wesley Harris, Phoenix Desert Vista, 6-6, Jr.
Michael Rogers, Cesar Chavez, 6-3, Jr.
Timmy Allen, Mesa Red Mountain, 6-6, Jr.
Terrell Brown, Basha, 6-3, Sr.
Aidyn Albright, Phoenix Horizon, 6-1, So.; Cedric Bridges, Surprise Valley Vista, 6-4, Jr.; Trent Brown, Pinnacle, 6-0, So.; Jaquan Butler, Phoenix Central, 6-4, Sr.; Saikou Gueye, Glendale Mountain Ridge, 6-4, Sr.; Tevian Jones, Chandler, 6-5, Jr.; Matthew Kempton, Phoenix Brophy, 6-4, Sr.; Tre Mitchell, La Joya, 6-2, Sr.; Gabriel Ponce, San Luis, 6-2, Sr.; D’Maurian Williams, Avondale Westview, 6-4, So.; Brenden Van Dyke, Westview, 6-7, Sr.; Nick Sessions, Mesa Mountain View, 6-4, Sr.; Quincy Smith, Avondale La Joya, 6-2, Sr.; Rashad Smith, Chandler Hamilton, 6-4, Jr.; Henry Walsh, Horizon, 5-11, Sr.
Holland Woods, Glendale Apollo, 6-0, Sr.
Dre Marin, Apollo, 6-0, Sr.
Chris Orozco, Phoenix Sunnyslope, 6-5, Jr.
Max Moses, Phoenix Arcadia, 6-0, Sr.
Colten Kresl, Scottsdale Chaparral, 6-1, Sr.
Bryce Davis, Glendale Deer Valley, 6-6, Jr.
Kyle Fischer, Sunnyslope, 6-4, Jr.
Bryce Fowler, Avondale Agua Fria, 6-6, Sr.
Evan Nelson, Marana Mountain View, 6-2, Fr.
Aidan Weber, Arcadia, 6-3, Jr.
Josh Baker, Tempe McClintock, 6-1, So.; Tashon Brown, Paradise Valley, 6-0, Jr.; Cody Carmichael, Glendale Ironwood, 5-7, Sr.; David Exline, Gilbert Mesquite, 6-4, Jr.; Josh Johnson, Maricopa, 5-6, Jr.; Elijah Mead, Phoenix Camelback, 6-0, Sr.; Donovan Regan, Laveen Betty Fairfax, 6-4, Jr.; Cole Roether, Peoria Liberty, 5-10, Sr.; Isaiah Rhymes, Phoenix Carl Hayden, 6-3, Jr.
Jovan Blacksher, Shadow Mountain, 6-1, So.
Majok Deng, Tucson Salpointe, 6-5, So.
Jaelen House, Shadow Mountain, 6-1, So.
Marcus Shaver, Shadow Mountain, 6-3, Sr.
Trevor Thompson, Phoenix Moon Valley, 6-3, Sr.
Sam Beskind, Tucson Catalina Foothills, 6-4, Jr.
Grant Greabell, Goodyear Estrella Foothills, 6-3, Jr.
K.J. Hymes, Phoenix St. Mary’s, 6-10, Jr.
Jared Martin, Scottsdale Saguaro, 6-5, Jr.
Mason Stark, Tempe Marcos de Niza, 6-2, Sr.
Mikel Beyers, El Mirage Dysart, 6-9, Sr.; Jorden Blake, St. Mary’s, 6-3, Sr.; Matt Eberhardt, Glendale Cactus, Sr.; Joe Heath, Mohave Valley Bullhead City, 6-3, Jr.; Miguel Hernandez, Phoenix Metro Tech, 5-10, Sr.; Jacob Johnson, Casa Grande, Sr.; Samuel Legleu, Nogales, Jr.; Jake Lieppert, Saguaro, 6-3, Sr.; Clayten McCarthy, San Tan Valley Combs, 6-6, Sr.; Cameron Miller, Salpointe, 6-0, Sr.; Martin Ochoa, Rio Rico, Sr.; Evan Quiroz, Apache Junction, 5-10, Jr.; Scotty Shaver, Phoenix Greenway, 6-3, Sr.; Darion Spottsville, Shadow Mountain, 6-3, Sr.; Brandon Tiffany, Flagstaff, 5-11, Sr.; Conner Verdugo, Sahuarita Walden Grove, Jr.; Naseem Vigil, Tempe, Jr.; Chris Wright, Gilbert Higley, Sr.;
Robert “B.J.” Burries, Globe, 5-11, So.
Jamaal Coleman, Ganado, 6-8, Sr.
Donovan Hanna, Queen Creek American Leadership, 6-6, Sr.
Bryce Andrashie, Fountain Hills, 6-5, Sr.
Rory Billie, Winslow, 5-11, Sr.
Andrew Augustine, Phoenix Northwest Christian, 6-0, Jr.
Matthew Svorinic, Chandler Valley Christian, 5-10, Sr.
Daniel Callendar, Yuma Catholic, 6-6, Sr.
Mason Berges, Lakeside Blue Ridge, 6-3, Jr.
Rarey Sommer, Florence, 6-5, So.
Jaylen Barnes, Yuma Catholic, 5-7, Sr.; Justin Billy, Page, 6-2, Sr.; Connor Braun, Valley Christian, 6-7, So.; Lucas Elliott, Tucson Pusch Ridge, 6-9, So.; Danny Gonzales, Tucson Santa Rita, 5-8, Sr.; Jalen Grijalva, Valley Christian, 6-1, So.; Tyler Kohner, Northwest Christian, 6-1, Sr.; Nachae Nez, Chinle, 5-9, Sr.; Anthony Pinto, Kingman, 6-5, Sr.; Jack Plouck, Tucson Empire, 5-9, Jr.; Jovann Thompson, Coolidge, 5-11, Jr.; Tristan Yazzie, Tuba City, Jr.; Michael Yellowhair, Ganando, 6-0, Sr.; Chris York, Queen Creek Casteel, 6-1, So.
Nate Graville, Gilbert Christian, 6-7, Sr.
Jarrett Kartchner, Pima, 6-6, Sr.
Tristen Upton, Whiteriver Alchesay, Jr.
Reed Myers, Scottsdale Christian, 6-1, So.
Jared Perry, Surprise Paradise Honors, 6-7, Jr.
Aloysius Case, San Carlos, 5-10, Jr.
Luke Gressel, Phoenix Veritas Prep, 6-3, Sr.
Daxton Wirth, Goodyear Trivium Prep, 6-5, Sr.
Kiimani Holt, Scottsdale Rancho Solano Prep, 6-3, Fr.
Junior Lee, Gilbert Leading Edge Academy, 5-8, Jr.
Byron Bert, Pinon, Sr.; John Cutter Jr., San Carlos, Sr.; Colton Hibbert, Flagstaff Northland Canyon, 5-11, Sr.; Caden Hoffman, Rancho Solano Prep, 5-11, Jr.; Cade Martin, Kingman Academy, 6-4, Sr.; Kyle Patterson, Gilbert Christian, 6-4, So.; Dawon Pruzynski, Pima, 6-4, So.; Andrew Reyna, Tucson St. Augustine Catholic, Jr.; Tommy Roberts, Trivium Prep, 6-2, Jr.; Ethan Spry, Scottsdale Christian, 6-7, So.; Spencer Thompson, Phoenix Country Day, 6-5, Sr.; Kyrane Yazzie, Keams Canyon Hopi, Sr.
Shekeedren Bryant, Phoenix NFL Yet, 6-4, So.
Tyraill Carrethers, NFL Yet, 5-9, Fr.
Trey Wood, Anthem Prep, 6-8, Jr.
Nick Rosquist, Tucson The Gregory School, 6-0, Sr.
Addison Mort, The Gregory School, 6-3, Jr.
Christopher Corona, Duncan, 5-9, Sr.
Tyler Carrizoza, Academy of Tucson, 6-0, Jr.
Chris Miranda, Patagonia, 5-10, Jr.
Cameron Key, Phoenix Valley Lutheran, 5-10, Sr.
Garrett Benally, Red Mesa, 6-4, Jr.
Victor Barajas, Patagonia, 6-4, So.; Levi Barlow, Colorado City El Capitan, 6-0, Sr.; Marcos Bueno, Superior, 6-2, Jr.; Matt Fields, Joseph City, 6-2, Jr.; Joshua Hawkins, Surprise Arizona Charter Academy, 6-4, So.; Weylin Hendricks, Sells Baboquivari, 5-11, Jr.; Mick Marquez, Anthem Prep, 5-9, Jr.; Payce Mortensen, Williams, 6-0, Jr.; Cade Mousel, Valley Lutheran, 6-0, Sr.; Ranley Yazzie, Rough Rock, 6-1, Sr.
Canyon Athletic Association All-Division 1
Anthony Goodman, Foothills Academy, Junior
Dante Gonzales, San Tan Charter School, Junior
Korbin Graham, Canyon View Academy, Senior (CAA Player of the Year)
Damian Cordova, ACP High School, Senior
Albert Yond, Starshine Academy, Senior
Ibrahima Camara, Bella Vista College Prep, Sophomore
John Henry Gonzales, AZ Compass Prep, Sophomore
Shane Van Huizen, Trinity Christian, Sophomore
Stephen Smith, Madison Highland Prep, Sophomore
Francisco Castro, Skyline Gila River, Sophomore
Jacob Schurz, Salt River, Sophomore
Coach of the Year: Jerry Keegan, Starshine Academy
Canyon Athletic Association All-Division 2
Brandon Haldiman, Desert Heights Prep, Senior
Jason Bell, Imagine Prep Surprise, Senior
KJ Smith, Imagine Prep Surprise, Senior
Brandon Haldiman, Desert Heights Prep, Senior (CAA Player of the Year)
Aweis Musa, Sequoia Charter, Senior
James Smith, Glenview College Prep, Senior
Mathew Davenport, Mission Heights, Senior
Kaseem Dupree, South Ridge, Junior
Deontae McInnis, Desert Heights Prep, Junior
Anthony Lerma, Sequoia Charter, Junior
Coaches of the Year: Percy Kincaid, Desert Heights Prep; Al Luna, Imagine Prep at Surprise
Canyon Athletic Association All-Division 3
Nigel Shadd, Tri-City Christian, Senior (CAA Player of the Year
Mike Cruz, West Phoenix, Senior
Bryce Thurman, Sequoia Pathway, Senior
Jamez Pearson, Skyline Prep, Senior
Seth Taylor, Skyline Prep, Senior
Manganok Mayen, Maya, Senior
Tyohn Higgins, Adobe Mountain, Senior
Carlos Dominguez, Southwest Leadership Academy, Junior
Chris Gallegos, EVAC, Junior
Elijah Balden, South Pointe HS, Sophomore
Coach of the Year: Jace Romero, Skyline Prep