KF’s Miller leads Suffolk girls honored

Published 10:08 pm Thursday, March 5, 2015

King’s Fork High School sophomore forward Amesha Miller was just learning the varsity ropes last year from the now-graduated star Khadedra Croker, and the 2014-15 All-Ironclad Conference accolades indicate she is a quick learner.

King's Fork High School forward Amesha Miller was named the Ironclad Conference girls' basketball Player of the Year, though she is only in her sophomore year.

King’s Fork High School forward Amesha Miller was named the Ironclad Conference girls’ basketball Player of the Year, though she is only in her sophomore year.

Miller succeeded Croker as the conference girls’ basketball Player of the Year and was one of three Lady Bulldogs to make the all-conference first team, along with two Nansemond River High School players.

“It meant a lot to me because of me being a sophomore,” Miller said of receiving the Player of the Year honor. She later added, “I had a lot to prove.”

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She noted that earning the award was not a goal she had in mind for this year.

“I played my best, and it just came,” she said.

She averaged 18.9 points, 10 rebounds and five blocks per game during the regular season.

King’s Fork coach Maurice Fofana said he was happy with the decision the coaches around the conference made to give her the honor.

“I can’t really say I’m surprised,” he said. “She was ranked top five in the area for scoring.”

She recorded 16 double-doubles despite seeing some of the same special defenses that teams used last season against Croker, who is now playing for Virginia Tech.

This was the first year Miller has ever received all-conference recognition in basketball.

The same was true for her teammate, senior guard Imani Lewis, who just transferred to King’s Fork this school year.

“I was really excited for Imani,” Fofana said, noting it was a great way for her to go out.

He said before she went out briefly with a hand injury just past the season’s midway point, she was ranked eighth in the area in scoring.

For the regular season, she ended up averaging 15.8 points, six rebounds, five assists and three blocks per game.

Lady Bulldogs sophomore guard Cydney Nichols earned a second team all-conference honor last year.

“This year, I kind of figured that she would be on the first team just by her numbers, the way she played,” Fofana said. “It was not a surprise at all.”

She averaged 16.5 points and five steals per game during the regular season, and of the teams King’s Fork plays regularly, Fofana said, “They know her now.”

Nansemond River junior forward Aneka Yelverton and junior center Sabre Clegg also made the all-conference first team.

“They both started as freshmen on a team that really wasn’t very good,” Lady Warriors coach R. Calvin Mason Sr. said. “They took a lot of lumps early as far as understanding even what to do on the basketball court.”

But he was pleased to see the conference honors highlight the improvement they have demonstrated since then.

Of Yelverton, “she’s been one of the leading scorers in the conference all year,” Mason said. “I felt like she deserved to be on the first team.”

She made the first team last year after averaging 14.9 points a game and bumped her output up to 16.2 points this year, despite facing more box-and-one defenses as the lone outside threat for Nansemond River.

Clegg made the second team as a sophomore when she averaged about nine points and seven boards per game, but she averaged a double-double this year, 13.3 points and 10.3 rebounds, to make the first team.

“I was happy for her as a basketball player and as a young lady,” Mason said. “She’s comes a long way from the Sabre that I had as a freshman.”

He said she was her team’s only real inside threat this year.

All-conference second team honorees for this season included NR freshman guard Briana Autrey and sophomore guard Cassidy Simmons, KF junior forward/center Jazlyn Dunn and Lakeland High School freshman guard Kayla Barnes.

Receiving honorable mention were Lady Warriors sophomore guard/forward Daijah Norris, Lady Bulldogs junior guard Jac’Quazja Council and Lady Cavaliers freshman forward/guard Brianna Copeland.