Lady Grizz basketball shining stars Marissa Arnold and Summer Johnson were honored with all-conference titles at the end of the basketball season. Arnold also earned all-state honors and was named the 2A Northwest Player of the Year. Maddy Hocker received an all-conference honorable mention.
“Marissa told me at the beginning of the year she wanted to go to State, and be all-state,” said coach Eric Honeyman. “She got one of her goals, which is all conference and all state.”
Arnold became known by other teams on the court as the player to watch out for and was often the focus of the opposing team’s defense in most games.
“Marissa had a lot of junk defenses thrown at her during the year, where they would just chase her,” said Honeyman. “Marissa had a great year. She was in the top 10 in every category for stats, from points, assists, rebounds, steals and field goal percentage. She is a girl that will come back wanting to be even better, and to reach her goal and dream to get to State.
“I am proud to coach her, and very excited for her accomplishments. Marissa had a game against Wyoming Indians where she scored 30 points, and then against Burlington she had 16 rebounds. She had her most assists in a game against Shoshoni at Regionals with five.”
Johnson also made a huge contribution to the team, and she seemed to get better as the season wore on. Honeyman attributed that to her hard work both on and off the court.
“Summer had a great off season last year that lead right into basketball season this year,” he said. “She came into the season going from not playing a lot of varsity ball to starting for us all year. She shot about 35 percent from the floor all season and was the floor general of the crew. During the last three weeks to a month she had an awesome end of the season. She averaged 7.3 points per game to go with 3.4 rebounds and 1.4 assists. She also shot around 58 percent from the free throw line during that stretch.
“I am excited for another off season with her and look forward to building on what she has done already. During our game against Riverside, she had 12 points, six rebounds and four assists. That was awesome to see that out of her.”
Honeyman said Hocker also caught the attention of coaches who voted on the honors during a special meeting at the regional championship games.
“She got honorable mention at the coaches meeting, which basically means she got some votes, just not enough for the top 12,” explained Honeyman. “Maddy came in the season ready to go. She put a lot of effort and time in the summer and you can tell with her shooting. Maddy was our third leading scorer for the year. She also led the team in blocks for the season. In one game, she had six block shots, which is fantastic. The other coaches told me that when they play Rocky, they wanted to make sure Maddy didn’t shoot. That would be one way they could beat us.
“Maddy played hard every day for the Lady Grizz, and being only a sophomore it is going to be great to get another solid summer out of her and to see her next year. I am proud of her and can’t wait for next year.”
With all three girls and many more team members expected to return next season Honeyman said he was excited about what the future will bring.
“I am proud of all of my girls this year. They all improved and I hope they see how close we are to being something special,” said Honeyman.
By Patti Carpenter