Basketball team

Meet the 2022 AL.com All-Birmingham Women’s Basketball Team

Two Birmingham-area women’s basketball teams have played for the Class 7A state title and another has reached the Final Four this season.

Hoover won their third championship in four years, beating Vestavia Hills for the Class 7A title, while Class 6A Pelham earned their first Final Four appearance in school history.

It was Hoover’s fourth consecutive championship appearance, winning four of the last six titles and six since 2010. The Bucs have eight championships overall in 14 title games.

Vestavia Hills won their only title in 1987 with four total title appearances, the last in 1997.

Players were selected for first, second and third team and honorable mention with Player of the Year, Newcomer of the Year and Coach of the Year.

The All-Birmingham Girls’ Team is compiled through the votes of area coaches, insights from AL.com staff and the opinions of area experts. It includes players from Jefferson and Shelby counties.

Here are the 2022 selections:

Hoover’s Layla Etchison will steal Vestavia Hills’ Anna Towry during the AHSAA Class 7A Women’s Championship at BJCC’s Legacy Arena in Birmingham, Alabama on Saturday, March 5, 2022. (Vasha Hunt | [email protected])hunt vasha

THIRD TEAM

Layla Etchison

School: Hoover

Height: 5 feet 6 inches

Class: Youth

Position: Guard

The Lean: Averaged 8.3 points, 2.5 rebounds and 1.4 assists with 60 steals. She was a defensive mainstay, drawing the opposition’s best player as the 33-3 Bucs won the Class 7A state title.

Samarian Franklin

School: Wenonah

Height: 5 feet 2 inches

Grade: Freshman

Position: Guard

Lean: Averaged 15 points, 4.2 rebounds and 4.2 assists with 125 steals for Wenonah, who lost in the regional semifinals. She was selected in all regional tournaments.

Sydney Schwallie

School: Chelsea

Height: 5 feet 5 inches

Class: Seniors

Position: Guard

The Lean: Averaged 8.9 points, 4 rebounds and 3.1 assists with 80 steals for 27-6 Chelsea, who lost in the regional final. She has scored over 1,000 career points and is the school’s all-time leader. She was ASWA Class 6A third team all-state.

Tamya Smith

School: Pleasant Grove

Height: 6 feet

Class: Guard

Position: second year student

The Lean: Averaged 12.8 points and 6.8 rebounds with 79 steals and 35 blocks for 25-8 Pleasant Grove, which lost in the Class 5A Regional Final. She was named ASWA Class 5A All-Tournament Regional and Third Team.

Kennedi Wagner

School: Ramsey

Height: 5 feet 6 inches

Class: Youth

Position: Guard

The skinny: Averaged 9.1 points, 1.3 rebounds and 1.3 assists with 47 steals for 18-6 Ramsay, who lost in the regional semifinals.

AHSAA Basketball Semi-Final

Pelham’s Laci Gogan works against Oxford’s Kaleah Taylor during an AHSAA Class 6A Semi-Final match at BJCC’s Legacy Arena in Birmingham, Alabama on Wednesday, March 2, 2022. (Vasha Hunt | [email protected] )hunt vasha

SECOND TEAM

Camille Chase

School: Parc d’Espagne

Height: 5 feet 7 inches

Class: Seniors

Position: Guard

The Lean: Averaged 10.8 points, 5.3 rebounds and 3.1 assists with 46 steals for 11-22 Spain Park. She took 31 charges this year and had 246 career 3-pointers. She was part of the third class 7A team.

Laci Gogan

School: Pelham

Height: 5 feet 8 inches

Class: Youth

Position: Guard

The Skinny: Averaging 16 points, 2.4 rebounds and 2.3 assists with 58 steals and 23 blocks for 27-6 Pelham, earning him a spot in his first Final Four in history. She was the second team of the ASWA Class 6A second team.

dyona jones

School: Hewitt-Trussville

Height: 6 feet 1

Class: Seniors

Position: Center

The Lean: Averaged 11.4 points, 7 rebounds and 1.4 assists with 35 steals and 42 blocks for 25-7 Hewitt-Trussville, which lost in the Regional Finals. She played in the Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Game.

Markia Smith

School: Midfielder

Height: 5 feet 10 inches

Class: Seniors

Position: Guard

The Skinny: Averaged 13.5 points, 5.9 rebounds and 2.3 assists with 94 steals for 20-6 Midfield, which lost in the Regional Semifinals. She was ASWA Class 2A second team all-state.

Tanita Swift

School: Center Point

Height: 5 feet 7 inches

Class: Seniors

Position: Guard

The Lean: Averaged 22 points, 7.2 rebounds and 3 assists with 70 steals for 14-10 Center Point. She scored 30 points in three games and was Class 5A, Zone 12 MVP. She was ASWA Class 2A second team all-state.

FIRST TEAM

AHSAA Basketball Championship

Hoover’s Aniya Hubbard cheers on her teammates after winning the AHSAA Class 7A Women’s Championship at BJCC’s Legacy Arena in Birmingham, Alabama on Saturday, March 5, 2022. (Vasha Hunt | [email protected])hunt vasha

Aniya Hubbard

School: Hoover

Height: 5 feet 9 inches

Class: Seniors

Position: Guard

The Lean: Averaged 14.6 points, 6.6 rebounds and 3.9 assists for the 33-3 Class 7A champion Bucs. She scored 1,767 career points and was named Regional All-Tournament, Final Four All-Tournament and Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Game MVP. The Florida Atlantic signee is a finalist for ASWA Class Player of the Year and was named Class 7A First-Team All-State.

Vestavia Hills vs. Hewitt-Trussville 7A NE girls final

Hewitt-Trussville’s Jordan Hunter passes the ball against Vestavia Hills’ Ally Smith during the AHSAA Class 7A Northeast Regional Finals at Pete Mathews Jacksonville State Coliseum in Jacksonville, Alabama on Monday, February 21 2022. (Dennis Victory | [email protected])

Jordan Hunter

School: Hewitt-Trussville

Height: 5 feet 9 inches

Class: Second year

Position: Guard

The Lean: Averaged 13.2 points, 4.1 rebounds and 4.7 assists with 63 steals and 21 blocks for 25-7 Hewitt-Trussville, which lost in the regional final. She has 965 points and 402 assists in her career and was named ASWA Class 7A to the All-State Second Team.

2022 HS Basketball Regional Playoffs – Mortimer Jordan vs. Athens

Mortimer Jordan’s Bellah Machen works the ball downfield during AHSAA Class 6A Northwest Regional action at Wallace State in Hanceville on Friday, Feb. 18, 2022. (Vasha Hunt | preps.al.com)hunt vasha

Bellah Machen

School: Mortimer Jordan

Height: 5 feet 8 inches

Class: Seniors

Position: Guard

The Lean: Averaged 15.8 points and 4.6 rebounds with 89 steals for 27-6 Chelsea, who lost in the regional final to Class 6A champion Hazel Green. She scored 1,755 career points and was a first-team member of ASWA Class 6A States.

North-South Women's Basketball

South MVP Alexis Andrews of Park Crossing and North MVP Shaniah Nunn of Fairfield are featured with Britteny Coleman of AHSADCA’s Jeff Davis. (AHSAA Photo/Marvin Gentry)

Shania Nunn

School: Fairfield

Height: 6 feet

Class: Seniors

Position: Striker

The Lean: Averaged 20.5 points, 11.4 rebounds and 2.9 assists with 71 steals and 57 blocks for 17-7 Class 5A Fairfield. She had over 3,500 points, over 1,000 rebounds and over 200 assists in her career. The Coastal Carolina pledge was the AHSAA North MVP of the North-South All-Star Game and played in the Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Game. She is a finalist for ASWA Class 5A Player of the Year and was on the States first team.

AHSAA Basketball Semi-Final

Emma Smith of Vestavia Hills heads for the basket against Brianna Harris of Auburn during an AHSAA Class 7A Semi-Final match at BJCC’s Legacy Arena in Birmingham, Alabama on Thursday, March 3, 2022. (Marvin Gentry | preps @al.com)

Emma Smith

School: Vestavia Hills

Height: 5 feet 8 inches

Class: Seniors

Position: Guard

The Lean: Averaged 15.2 points, 7.3 rebounds and 3.3 assists with 110 steals for 33-3 Class 7A Vestavia Hills, which lost to Hoover in the championship. She had 1,985 points and 1,025 rebounds in her career. She played in the Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Game and was ASWA’s first Class 7A states team.

PLAYER OF THE YEAR

AHSAA Basketball Semi-Final

Hoover’s Reniya Kelly shoots against Davidson’s Kelsey Thompson in an AHSAA Class 7A Semi-Final match at BJCC’s Legacy Arena in Birmingham, Alabama on Thursday, March 3, 2022. (Marvin Gentry | [email protected])

Reniya Kelly, vacuum cleaner

The 5-foot-7 junior guard averaged 14.7 points, 4.2 rebounds and 4.9 assists per game with 103 steals this season for the Class 7A champion Bucs, who finished 33-3. Kelly was a member of ASWA’s first Class 7A States team and is a finalist for Player of the Year. She has 1,735 career points and was named Regional and Final Four MVP. She shot 45% from the field (194 of 431), 76% from the free throw line (68 of 89), and 41% from 3-point range (73 of 177) and committed at North Carolina. .

NEW OF THE YEAR

AHSAA Basketball Championship

Sarah Gordon of Vestavia Hills shoots Hoover during the AHSAA Class 7A Girls Championship at BJCC’s Legacy Arena in Birmingham, Alabama on Friday, March 4, 2022. (Marvin Gentry | [email protected])

Sarah Gordon, Vestavia Hills

The 5-foot-11 freshman averaged 11.1 points, 3.7 rebounds, 1.2 steals per game and had a team-best 17 blocks for 33-3 Class 7A Vestavia Hills, which lost to Hoover in the championship. She converted 37% of her 3-point attempts. She was the third Class 7A team.

COACH OF THE YEAR

AHSAA Basketball Championship

Vestavia Hills coach John David Smelser works with his team during the AHSAA Class 7A Women’s Championship at BJCC’s Legacy Arena in Birmingham, Alabama on Saturday, March 5, 2022. (Vasha Hunt | [email protected])hunt vasha

John David Smelser, Vestavia Hills

Smelser guided the 33-3 Class 7A Rebels to their first championship appearance since 1997 with two of that season’s losses to champions Hoover. The former Hillcrest-Tuscaloosa standout baseball player – he was Mr. Baseball in 2007 – compiled a 154-27 record in six years as a coach, the last three coming with Vestavia Hills with an 86 record -18. He won two AAA AISA titles with Tuscaloosa Academy before taking the Vestavia Hills job.

Vestavia Hills vs. Hewitt-Trussville 7A NE girls final

Audre Benson of Hewitt-Trussville attempts to pass Jill Gaylard of Vestavia Hills during the AHSAA Class 7A Northeast Regional Finals at Pete Mathews Jacksonville State Coliseum in Jacksonville, Alabama on Monday, February 21 2022. (Dennis Victory | [email protected])

HONORABLE MENTION

Audre Benson, Hewitt-Trussville

Zoie Galloway, Leeds

Paxton Gillispie, Spain Park

Olivia Johnigan, Helena

Jamiria Jones, Huffman

Emma Kerley, Briarwood

Trenay Lane, Vincent

Jasmine Lenyard, midfielder

Jai-Lin Ivory, Montevallo

Kristen McMillanHoover

Arianna Moseley, Pleasant Grove

Alecia Reasor, Thompson

Lexi Redd, Chelsea

Alana Scott, Helen

Ally Smith, Vestavia Hills

Emily Straughn, Mountain Stream

Myriah Tate, Pelham

Tameria Taylor, McAdory

Anna Towry, Hills of Vestavia

Kayla Warren, Homewood

Raegan WhitakerOak Mountain

Emily White, Westminster-Oak Mountain

Tajee Young, Fairfield