Hoosick Falls -- Sr.
A full story on Pearson appeared in the Weekend Banner and can be found in Saturday's edition on the website at www.benningtonbanner.com.
Arlington -- Sr.
Sherman cemented her first-team spot with a tremendous, 23-point performance in the Division IV semifinals, willing Arlington past No. 2 West Rutland and into the championship game. At 11.7 points per game, she wasn't the Eagles' leading scorer -- though she did score 20 or more five times, a team-best -- but, rather, their best defensive stopper and emotional leader. Sherman averaged 19.5 a game in the Eagles' back-to-back playoff upsets (they also knocked off No. 3 Craftsbury on the road) and showed again why she is one of the toughest players around.
Hoosick Falls -- So.
Pine emerged as a dangerous second option for the Panthers after leading scorer Frankie Pearson, averaging 11 points per game. The dynamic sophomore also wreaked havoc in passing lanes, turning steals into easy transition baskets. "She's so athletic, quick. She has got a knack to get to the ball and she can score for us," coach Eamonn DeGraaf said. "People have to respect her shot, which opens up chances to drive." Hoosick Falls' top free throw shooter, Pine was also extra-clutch when it mattered, converting at an 87 percent clip in the fourth quarter.
Mount Anthony -- Jr.
One of the area's most potent long-range assassins, Farrara was the leading scorer (10 ppg) for a supremely balanced Mount Anthony team that upset No. 4 South Burlington as a 13-seed in the Division I tournament. Opponents had to account for Farrara at all times -- any breathing room could lead to a barrage of 3-pointers or a slicing drive to the hoop. The junior tallied 19 against Monument Mountain to snap a Patriots losing streak and 24 the next night to ensure it didn't start again.
Burr and Burton -- Sr.
One half of the Bulldogs' priceless senior duo, Halligan was the team's "stabilizer" this winter. The senior could knock down must-make jumpers to spark the offense and offered a steady hand at point guard, averaging six points per game this winter. Halligan also provided one of the year's most inspirational performances in her return to action after her mother passed away, scoring 11 points to lead BBA to an overtime win vs. Hartford. "Coming back from what she had to go through shows what kind of a leader and person she is," coach Terry Merrow said.
Hoosick Falls -- Jr.
Offensive numbers took a backseat to defense some nights for Williams, but that almost always made the Panthers better. The junior point guard also doubled as the team's best defender, drawing the toughest assignment each night. "A lot of the things she does go unnoticed," coach Eamonn DeGraaf said. The junior put up 8.4 points per game as DeGraaf's floor general, capable of slashing to the hoop and adept at finding teammates in the right place at the right time.
Burr and Burton -- Sr.
Brown's scoring average, at a little over five points a game, does no justice to the type of playmaker and leader she became for the Bulldogs this winter. Along with senior backcourt mate Rory Halligan, Brown made BBA go as the team's "heart and soul," coach Terry Merrow said. "What Devin brought was her spirit and desire -- the team fed off of that." The senior got stronger as the year went on, hitting double figures in four games during the second half, including a season-high 16 against Windsor.
Arlington -- So.
Arlington's leading scorer, Elwell (12 ppg) was one of the premier 3-point shooters in southern Vermont. The sophomore point guard could fill up the score column when called upon, including a career-high 28 points in a win against Bellows Falls. Elwell was a poised distributor for an Eagles team that, when breaking in transition or exploiting mismatches, had four other players who could hit double figures on any night
Mount Anthony -- Jr.
Legacy was one of the Patriots' most consistent performers and, averaging nine points per game, the second-leading scorer with senior Lacy Parmenter. The junior, in her third year on varsity, stamped her billing as an interior force and one of the team's best rebounders. Her hard-working game didn't always translate into flashy stats but was an X-factor when the Patriots were firing on all cylinders.
Burr and Burton -- Fr.
Freshman? What freshman? Nicholson had an impact from the get-go, serving as the Bulldogs' primary low-post presence and a constant double-double threat. She was the team's leading scorer at 8.8 points per game, including a high of 18 against Rutland in the regular season finale. "She's going to be a force to be reckoned with," coach Terry Merrow said. "She didn't play like a freshman. You can't say enough about that kid."
COACH OF THE YEAR
Arlington (2nd season)
Our 2012 coach of the year as well, Andrews earned the nod this year by forging a team that reached the Division IV state final as a No. 6 seed, the lowest since 1994. Even more remarkable? The Eagles started the season 0-4. Aside from back-to-back losses to top-seeded Proctor -- the eventual state champ -- late in the year, Andrews' balanced, undersized club rebounded to go 12-1 en route to reaching the title game.