2023-24 Season: Freshmen to Watch
Some teams have already tipped off the season and just after Thanksgiving, every team in the state will be off and running. We all know a lot of the big names in the state and have our teams that are…
Some teams have already tipped off the season and just after Thanksgiving, every team in the state will be off and running. We all know a lot of the big names in the state and have our teams that are considered “must-see” basketball. I mean, we really are in a renaissance of girls’ basketball in Oklahoma. Just in time, there is a new class of players appearing on the scene. As per usual in our great state, this class is also loaded with talent! Take a look at some of the players a lot of college coaches most likely already know about and you should, too!
When someone asked me recently which of the many Grind Prep stars I was most excited to see when I get to one of their games this season, De’Andra’s name was the first that came to mind. The time I was able to see her in person, she was still very young and she already had the look of a Division-I college basketball player. The game has slowed down for her and her patience is incredible. She is a tremendous slasher from the wing because she reads the defense incredibly well. At the time that I saw De’Andra play she could jump out of the gym and that’s been a while. I have this sneaking suspicion that surrounded by superior athletes, it may not be a matter of if someone from Grind Prep is going to dunk, but when… and I might put my money on De’Andra Minor.
Ali has been to a lot of Prep Girls events, including our recent Freshmen Showcase, where she once again stood out among her peers. She is an incredible shooter from long range and always shows that she has an incredible basketball IQ. Even from the times have seen her in thrown together situations, you can tell that her thinking about the workings of the offense is on a whole other level. She sees the game very well at a very young age. I think she will have an impressive debut this season and anytime you’re out there on the floor with the defending state champs, you’re just going to be getting better and better.
Speaking of dunking, BG, as Laila is known, has stated that we should keep watching because she’s going to dunk “one of these days.” I definitely believe her. Watch the video and there’s not too much this kid can’t do. She’s an outstanding softball player. She also golfs. She also trains with the masterly Bryatt Vann. All this is to say, if BG says she’s going to do something, I’m not going to say she isn’t. That’s also to say, if she wants to go out and have a big time freshman year for Deer Creek, she most definitely can. I’ve seen the footwork and post moves she’s been working on. She definitely has the ability.
Yet another player from the class of 2027 that is already taking big-time college visits, Trinity has shown basketball skill way beyond her years for a long time now. Her ability to put the ball in the basket is legendary. I mean that in the way that, you hear about her scoring before you hear about her. When you walk into a tournament that Trinity is at, the first thing you hear is, “that girl over there gets buckets.” If you look at the roster and see “Boone,” you know what the story is. She’s over there hitting some of the sweetest jump shots you’re gonna see all day. She’s driving into traffic and finishing hard through contact. She’s a spark plug that gets everything going and has everyone talking.
Kynli is very good at three different sports, but don’t get it twisted. Kynli is a basketball player. In fact, she was the MVP of the Super16 AllStars game that features the best middle schoolers in the state before they head off to high school. The MVP! Of course she brings that softball mentality to the basketball court and plays absolutely relentless, hard-nosed defense. She also battles incredibly hard for a guard on the boards and gets a lot of rebounds for somebody, not just somebody her size, but for a basketball player in general. She is a great shooter and can score in a lot of different ways, especially by beating you in transition. You’re going to want to catch an Owls game this season.
**Yes, I know she’s really good at softball. This is me trying to claim her for basketball. Ok?