Becker, Jackson pace All Area small school girls

The Final Four run ended for area girls basketball teams this year, but several players who were a part of a state championship during that span were recognized for their efforts in 2022.

Trenton’s Bri Becker and Hawthorne’s Jaz’lyn Jackson, who both won state titles in 2019 and 2020, respectively, highlight the 2022 Mainstreet Daily News All Area Girls Basketball Team.

A panel of local sportswriters and coaches chose the All Area teams from Mainstreet’s eight-county coverage area. All 44 players and coaches will receive commemorative plaques to recognize their accomplishments.

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Jackson averaged 10.4 points, 6.5 rebounds, and 3.1 assists for the Hornets (16-6), who lost to Wildwood in a Class 1A regional final, denying Hawthorne its fourth straight trip to Lakeland and the area’s fifth straight trip.

“She’s our emotional leader,” Ingram said of his junior after the loss. “She’s been great all year. She’ll be back next year.”

The junior played a key role her freshman year when she averaged 10.2 points and 9.1 rebounds per game for the Hornets, who finished 29-2 following a 33-32 win against Port St. Joe in the Class 1A state championship game.

Trenton guard Bri Becker

Becker finished third in the voting for the Florida Dairy Farmers Class 1A Player of the Year.

“Bri has been a staple on the Trenton Lady Tigers basketball program since ninth grade,” said Trenton coach Bryant Fyre. “Not only has she contributed to THS, but she has also led most of the statistics other than scoring around the area. Most coaches around the area strategize their game plans around Bri’s abilities as a leader and floor general.”

The senior, who helped lead the Tigers (17-10) to their seventh straight district title, just missed averaging a double-double this past season (11.5 points and 9.4 rebounds per game), and she also averaged 6.6 assists, 5.1 steals, and 1.5 blocks.

“I have seen many players try and imitate her playing style and she has set the mold for how to be the ultimate team and leader,” Frye said.

Joining Becker in the backcourt on the first team is Charity Hodge of Chiefland.

“Behind all the hours of practice and all the coaches that push you, there is that girl that shot the ball, fell in love with the game, and never looked back,” Indians coach Lee Bell said.

Hodge led the Indians (17-9) with 13.3 ppg. The senior also averaged 5.5 rebounds and 3.3 steals per game.

“Charity was very competitive, she was a player that practiced hard, and never wanted to miss practice,” Bell said. “If the game was on the line, she was the one you wanted to have the ball in her hands for the last shot and being a leader that’s what she meant to the team.”

Fort White, which won its first district title in program history this year, placed two on the first team – guard Jacovya Major and forward/center Isreal Hart.

Major averaged 15.9 points per game for the Indians (17-3), who lost to Lafayette (Mayo) in the 1A regional semifinals. The senior also averaged 4.4 rebounds and 4.4 steals per game.

“Jacovya is the ultimate player,” said Fort White coach DeShay Harris. “She is a leader on and off the court. She has been a dynamic scorer for us her whole career. She has had a tremendous impact on our program.”

Fort White forward Isreal Hart

Hart averaged 10.9 points, 6.4 rebounds, 2.1 steals, and 2.6 blocks per game as a freshman.

“Isreal is an amazing athlete for such a young player,” Harris said. “The sky is the limit for the potential she has.”

Hawthorne teammates De’Mya Adams and Saideriel Oliver also made the second team.

Adams, a freshman guard, averaged 10.3 points, 2.7 assists, and 2.9 steals per game for the region finalists, while Oliver, a senior center, was third on her team in scoring with an average of 8.7 points per game.

Joining the Hornets on the second team are Santee Blye of Bradford (Starke) and Jordan Douglas of Trenton, who ended her career with a pair of Final Four trips and a state title. Douglas led the Tigers in scoring, averaging 11.7 points per game.

Blye led the Tornadoes by averaging a double-double with 10.7 points and 10.3 rebounds per game.

“Santee Blye is a player that does a lot for us on our basketball team,” said Bradford coach Kelton Givens, who noted that Blye has remained coachable and consistent throughout her career. “When it comes to every part of the game, Santee involves herself in it. Scoring, defending, and rebounding are pieces of the game that we as a team could look to Santee to come through for us on a nightly basis.”

Rounding out the second team is Bronson freshman guard/forward Audrey Hubbard.

The freshman averaged an area-best 17.9 points per game, along with 6.4 rebounds, 2.3 assists, and 4.6 steals per game.

“She’s an elusive, competitive and determined athlete who can and will find a way to bring excitement and energy to the team and game,” said Eagles’ coach Rod Thomas.

GIRLS – SMALL SCHOOL (1A-2A) (1st Team)

G – Bri Becker, Trenton (Senior)

G – Jacovya Major, Fort White (Senior)

G – Charity Hodge, Chiefland (Senior)

F – Jaz’lyn Jackson, Hawthorne (Junior)

C/F – Isreal Hart, Fort White (Freshman)

GIRLS – SMALL SCHOOL (1A-2A) (2nd Team)

G – De’Mya Adams, Hawthorne (Freshman)

G – Jordan Douglas Trenton (Senior)

G/F – Santee Blye, Bradford (Senior)

G/F – Audrey Hubbard, Bronson (Freshman)

C – Saideriel Oliver, Hawthorne (Senior)

Honorable mention:

Branford – Zjamyah Wilson (Fr., G)

Bradford (Starke) – Jada Hankerson (So., G), 

Chiefland – Nikki Fuller (Sr./C), Brianna Bell (8th-grade, G)

Dixie County – Jaidyn Brown (So., G)

Fort White – N’Coreyia Atkins (So., G), Lisa Gall (So., F) 

Hawthorne – Jhalea Jackson (Fr., F-C)

Newberry – Natreana Akanni (So., F), Kemari Robinson (Sr., C), Sarah Beaulieu (Fr., G), Deasia Bryant (Jr., G/F)

Oak Hall – Annabeth Dyrkolbotn (Sr., F), Tyla Young (Sr./G), Kate Pickens (Jr., G)

Santa Fe (Alachua) – Taylor Mullins (Fr., G)

St. Francis Catholic – Mallory Jablonski (Sr., G), Lexi Bhatia (So., G)

Trenton – Ta’tyiana Jackson (Sr., G-F)

Union County – Heaven Scott (Fr.)

Williston – Ranajala Brown (Jr., G).

This is the first of five stories unveiling the 2022 Mainstreet Daily News All Area Basketball Team, sponsored by Smith Law Firm (girls teams) and Smith Asset Management Company (boys teams). Check back tomorrow for the All Area big school girls team. 

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