By Ray Hamill — Fortuna’s Charlotte Carroll has been named co-MVP of the Big 5 in girls basketball after leading the way on a Huskies team that won the program’s first conference championship since the early 1980s.
Carroll was one of five league MVPs announced on Saturday, including Del Norte’s Jadence Clifton, who also was co-MVP of the Big 5 after her sensational season.
Omar Banuelos made it a double for the Warriors after getting the nod for MVP of the Big 5 boys.
In the Little 4, St. Bernard’s swept the MVP awards, which went to senior Lane Thrap and freshman Saulele Tanuvasa, each of whom also had outstanding seasons.
Carroll was one of three Fortuna girls named all-league, along with guards McKenzie Emmons and Gracie Betts.
“She worked as hard as anybody in practice,” Fortuna head coach Scott Betts said of Carroll, a senior center. “And on the court she was definitely our floor leader.”
She was also a threat at both ends of the court, with quick feet for a post player and quick reaction.
“One of the things that always gets overlooked is she played great defense,” the head coach said.
Clifton too was hugely influential this past season, consistently leading the way for the Warriors despite the relentless double-team defense she faced.
Tanuvasa and Thrap each also enjoyed stellar seasons leading their respective teams to league titles.
For Thrap, it was a fitting way to close out what has been a remarkable prep carer at the school, while this is the second MVP award this year for Tanuvasa, who also got the award in volleyball.
In the boys Big 5, Banuelos was joined on the all-league team by Del Norte teammates Anthony Slayton and Kobe Mitchell.
For Arcata, which pushed the Warriors all the way in the race for the Big 5, Garrett Hall and Jack Taylor were named all-league.
Eureka’s Jaeden Thayer and Cahliel Garner were each also named to the all-league team, along with Fortuna’s Bo Cox.
No McKinleyville players were named all-league.
In the Little 4, St. Bernard’s Remy Campbell and Will Omey were named all-league, along with Sourth Fork’s Alex Harding and Cameron Messenger.
Rounding out the L4 all-league selections are Ferndale’s Emmitt Albee and Jenner Christiansen, as well as Hoopa’s John Smith.
In the Big 5 girls, Eureka’s Sophia Chalmers and Malia Guilbert both were included in the all-league selections, along with Arcata’s Jocelyn Bliven and Zoie Andre, Del Norte’s Aleesha Lenover and McKinleyville’s Cameron Heenan and Rayn Tripp.
In the Little 4 girls, Tanuvasa is joined on the all-league team by SB teammates Josie Peterson and MacKenzie Finck.
Ferndale’s Natalee Guerrero and Macey Sutherland, Hoopa’s Naschewen Hunsucker and Carina Peterson, and South Fork’s Kaylie Valk round out the L4 selections.
Big 5 — Kaleb Price, Judson Pincombe and Damian Dowd (Del Norte); Mason Railsback and Brandon Bento-Jackson (Arcata); Trevor Bell, Jackson Giacone and CJ Chaidez (Eureka); Fernando Atilano (Fortuna)
Little 4 — Owen Shanahan and Hunter Davis (St. Bernard’s); Jayden Paine (South Fork); Tristen Martin and Cody Sampson (Ferndale); Tristin Campbell, Tavis Young, Joseph McGinnis and Carlos Aguilar (Hoopa)
Big 5 — Morgan Murray and Moncerrat Bernal (Fortuna); Carly Boynton, Kellina Pratton, McKenna Beach, Bella Vigil and Keylei Carroll (Eureka); Grace Talty and Bella Volz-Broughton (Arcata); Kirsten Brous and Selene Ledezama (Del Norte); Hailee Henry and Rian Heenan (McKinleyville)
Little 4 — Shelby Jordan and Marayah Tomlinson (St. Bernard’s); Hallie Short (Ferndale); Beyonce Bussell and K-Lynn Swanson (Hoopa); Kaylee Cotter (South Fork)