816 North notebook: West Platte, Staley players finalists for elite hoops award

04/22/2014 12:31 PM

04/22/2014 12:32 PM

West Platte High School forward Adam Roe is among 10 finalists for Mr. Show-Me Basketball, and Staley guard Monique Townson is a finalist for Miss Show-Me Basketball. The winners of the awards, which are presented annually to the top senior basketball players in the state, will be revealed Sunday.

Townson averaged 23.6 points, seven rebounds and 3.1 assists per game for the Falcons and was selected to The Star’s All-Metro first team. She has signed to play with Arkansas-Little Rock.

After returning from anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) surgery, Roe averaged 21.2 points and 9.1 rebounds for West Platte in the recently-completed season. He ranks as the school’s No. 3 all-time scorer with 1,957 points in four seasons. He has signed to play at the U.S. Military Academy.

Other finalists for Mr. Show-Me Basketball are Monte Harrison (Lee’s Summit West), Tyrone Taylor (Grandview), Cody Geiger (Republic), Stefan Cox (Sedalia Sacred Heart), Chaz Glotta (Fort Zumwalt North of O’Fallon), Chris Kendrix (Willard), Jordan Barnett (Christian Brothers of St. Louis), Ronnie Suggs (Washington) and Chris Clark (Columbia Hickman).

In addition to Townson, the finalists for Miss Show-Me Basketball include Imani Johnson (Lee’s Summit North), Carrie Shephard (South Pemiscot of Steele), Lauren Aldridge (Marshfield), Hannah Cook (Ozark), Megan Rosenbohn (Nodaway Holt of Graham), Nakiah Bell (Incarnate Word of St. Louis), Bri Porter (Columbia Rock Bridge) and Mikaela Burgess (Webb City).

Coach moving on

Zane Tanner is leaving the only head coaching job he has ever known.

After 17 years leading the West Platte boys basketball program, Tanner accepted an offer last Friday to become the new Kearney Bulldogs head coach, replacing Gary Belcher, who departed for the head coaching job at St. Joseph Benton.

“It was hard telling my kids,” Tanner said. “West Platte will be an experience I’ll look back on and have nothing but positive memories.”

It was a largely successful tenure, even if it didn’t include a state championship.

Tanner earned his 300th victory at West Platte in the recently-completed season and has teams reached the Missouri Class 2 Final Four four times, finishing second twice and fourth twice. The Blue Jays lost only three games over the last two seasons.

He will look to bring the same success to Kearney, although it’s a much larger stage, with the Bulldogs playing in Class 4.

“Defense and rebounding are the two things that really carried us, (along) with transition offense and transition defense,” Tanner said. “Those are some things I’d like to try to implement right away. I want to play faster and let the kids make decisions on the fly. I love seeing kids develop those decisions to read and react to the game.”

Baseball: Northland Classic

The Northland Classic baseball tournament began Monday and will conclude with a championship game at 12 p.m. Saturday at Oak Park.

Excelsior Springs, Fort Osage, Liberty, Liberty North, Park Hill South, Smithville and Staley picked up victories on the tournament’s opening day. Oak Park, Kearney, Winnetonka, North Kansas City, Platte County, Park Hill and St. Pius are also taking part in the 12-team tournament.

Liberty North is the top-ranked team in the field, checking in at No. 3 in Missouri Class 5 in the latest Missouri High School Baseball Coaches Association poll. Smithville is ranked sixth in the Missouri Class 4 poll.

The tournament will feature semifinal games Friday, setting the stage for Saturday’s championship game.

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